Last week, Tesla CEO/recent Trump nemesis/real-life Lex Luthor Elon Musk took to Twitter to comment on a recent Insider report that he had fathered twins with a high-ranking employee, bringing his total number of children to nine. Rather than simply denying the report, as many high-profile individuals would, Musk leaned into it, confirming that he had, in fact, impregnated his employee: “Doing my best to help the underpopulation crisis. A collapsing birth rate is the biggest danger civilization faces by far,” he tweeted on July 7.
Grossly, Nick Cannon, who is set to welcome his eighth child, responded with a fist emoji and a “Right there with you my Brother!” Even Meghan McCain got involved, penning a lengthy op-ed in the Daily Mail calling the two the “creepiest tag team tweet thread in history” and calling the “‘impregnate the planet’ mentality” “flat-out weird.”
Unfortunately, McCain is absolutely correct in this regard: it is, indeed, weird for powerful men to publicly articulate their desire — nay, compulsion — to ejaculate into as many birth canals as possible. As co-hosts Brittany Spanos and Ej Dickson discuss on the latest episode of Don’t Let This Flop, Rolling Stone‘s podcast about internet news and culture, such behavior is characteristic of a breeding kink. A breeding kink is sexual desire to impregnate as many people as possible for reasons related to power, control, or even in some cases eugenics; an impulse shared by such illustrious luminaries as Jeffrey Epstein and Donald Cline, the Indianapolis fertility doctor featured in Netflix’s Our Father who inseminated dozens of women without their consent over the course of decades. (He later pleaded guilty to two felony counts of obstruction of justice related to the investigation, receiving a one-year suspended sentence.)
It is arguably even weirder to chalk up this penchant for nutting, as Musk does, to a desire to repopulate a rapidly dying planet that is on the brink of a dire population shortage that is almost entirely a figment of his pumpkin-sized dome. It’s particularly jarring because Musk has made the so-called “population crisis” something of a pet cause for a long time, telling the audience at a Wall Street Journal event in 2021, “I can’t emphasize this enough, there are not enough people,” and urging them to have more children. (He may be keeping it in the family in this regard: on Thursday, it was reported Musk’s 76-year-old estranged father Errol is expecting his second child with his 35-year-old stepdaughter, telling the Sun: “The only thing we are on Earth for is to reproduce.”) Musk holds these views in spite of the fact that Musk’s company has allegedly fired employees for becoming pregnant, and has slammed bills that allocate federal funding to child care (though he has recently personally vowed to increase childcare benefits at his own company, without specifying what they may be).
If Musk believes we are living in the plot-line of a critically acclaimed Alfonso Cuaron movie, he is sorely mistaken. Most population experts agree that we are not in the throes of a downward spiral, but that the human population is rapidly growing. Indeed, earlier this week the UN projected that 2.4 billion more people would be added to the global population by 2086, reaching a peak of about 10.4 billion people in the 2080s. That is….a lot of people. In the United States specifically, birth rates have indeed been declining consistently since 2007, and there is evidence of such demographic trends creating a negative impact in the long term (as is the case in Japan, where the population is rapidly aging and there is concern about a winnowing workforce.) But many experts believe that is an extreme example, and do not consider this a particularly pressing issue.
Indeed, declining birth rates are only of major concern in that they reflect deeper issues within society, Karen Benjamin Guzzo, a sociology professor at Bowling Green State University and acting director of the Center for Family and Demographic Research, previously told Rolling Stone. “[We] know on average people still say they want to have two kids. If people aren’t able to do that, that suggests to me our society is failing them, that we don’t have the structures in place that they can have the family they want to have. And that’s sad,” she said.
Musk is worth an estimated $226 billion, more than enough to support a family the size of the United States Supreme Court. But other people — dare we say, most people — are worth significantly less than that, and have extremely valid economic reasons for not wanting to procreate like former NFL cornerbacks. As much as Musk may personally enjoy the act of impregnating his subordinates, advocating for doing so under the guise of some (bullshit) social justice issue is gross. Let us be the last time we print this in Rolling Stone history: Meghan McCain is right.
This week on Don’t Let This Flop, Dickson and Spanos also discuss Doja Cat’s public war against a Stranger Things cast member/child, the Lea Michele-Beanie Feldstein drama, and why Drew Barrymore may not be able to count.
Don’t Let This Flop is released Wednesdays on all audio streaming platforms, including Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Amazon Music, Stitcher and more.
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