A 27-year-old man from India has made headlines after announcing his intentions to sue his parents for giving birth to him “without his consent”.
Raphael Samuel, from Mumbai, is an ‘antinatalist’. Antinatalism, according to the Subreddit dedicated to it, is “the philosophical position that assigns a negative value to birth”.
They believe that it is morally wrong for people to have kids, and that a significant amount of human misery could be avoided if everyone just stopped doing that. I guess it’s hard to have human misery without any humans!
His main beef seems to be that he thinks parents have children for their own entertainment and pleasure, which is a conclusion I assume he’s arrived at without actually speaking to any parents. Sure, people have children because they want to, but I think describing it as ‘entertainment’ is a gross mischaracterisation of periods like Terrible Twos, or adolescence.
Based on the above image from his Facebook page, his biggest problems with being alive seem to revolve around getting stuck in traffic and being expected to work.
Who wants to bet this guy’s parents just asked him to either move out of their basement, or get a job and start paying rent?
Samuel says he first had antinatalist thoughts when he was five, which probably isn’t uncommon, but most people don’t turn it into a lifelong crusade culminating in a frivolous lawsuit against their parents.
“I was a normal kid. One day I was very frustrated and I didn’t want to go to school but my parents kept asking me to go. So I asked them: ‘Why did you have me?’ And my dad had no answer. I think if he’d been able to answer, maybe I wouldn’t have thought this way.”
His parents, for their part, are being incredibly chill about it.
“I must admire my son’s temerity to want to take his parents to court knowing both of us are lawyers. And if Raphael could come up with a rational explanation as to how we could have sought his consent to be born, I will accept my fault.”
Which is the big question regarding this lawsuit: how is he going to argue that his parents should have sought his consent when zygotes can’t consent? And who’s to say whether baby-him would have also been an antinatalist? Can consent to be born be revoked once someone grows up and changes their mind?
Anyway, here’s a video from the man himself explaining why he’s suing his parents, complete with an incredibly obvious fake beard.
The fake beard is almost the weirdest thing about this entire saga. Almost.
I look forward reading to an update after a judge laughs him out of court, and tells him to stop annoying his parents.