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    Are men necessary?

    Recklessness, violence and stupidity are among the reasons men don’t live as long as women, according to a lead editorial in the British Medical Journal. And men, it is argued, are in danger of becoming increasingly irrelevant, even extinct.
    “Despite having had most of the social determinants of health in their favour, men have higher mortality rates for all 15 leading causes of death and a life expectancy about seven years shorter than a woman’s,” says the Journal. It blames the penchant of men to start and wage wars, drink too much, and accept stupid risks, from fast cars to sexually transmitted diseases.
    And the one indispensable role of men — maintaining the species — could soon disappear.
    “With the advent of sperm banks, in vitro fertilization, sex sorting techniques, sperm-independent fertilization of eggs with somatic [non-sperm] cells, human cloning, and same-sex marriages, it is reasonable to wonder about the future role of men in society.”
         Source: “Are Men in Danger of Extinction?” British Medical Journal, November 3, 2001.

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