One frequent criticism of The Population Bomb is that it focused on spectacle and exaggeration at the expense of accuracy. Pierre Desrochers and Christine Hoffbauer remark that "at the time of writing The Population Bomb , Paul and Anne Ehrlich should have been more cautious and revised their tone and rhetoric, in light of the undeniable and already apparent errors and shortcomings of Osborn and Vogt’s analyses."  Charles Rubin has written that it was precisely because Ehrlich was largely unoriginal and wrote in a clear emotionally gripping style that it became so popular. He quotes a review from Natural History noting that Ehrlich does not try to "convince intellectually by mind dulling statistics," but rather roars "like an Old Testament Prophet."  Gardner says, "as much as the events and culture of the era, Paul Ehrlich's style explain the enormous audience he attracted." Indeed, an appearance on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson helped to propel the success of the book, as well as Ehrlich's celebrity.  Desrochers and Hoffbauer go on to conclude that it seems hard to deny that using an alarmist tone and emotional appeal were the main lessons that the present generation of environmentalists learned from Ehrlich's success.
All of this so far would be merely an academic curiosity, another example of zany religious clerics making odd declarations based on ever odder historical precedents. But The Catholic Church is also a heavy activist, and has caused uncountable numbers of poor people in South America and Africa to become infected with HIV and other STD s, contributed to the dangerous population explosion, and undermined charity organisations that support birth control, such as when the Birmingham Catholic Church boycotted Comic Relief because money raised might go to a family planning clinic that gave access to contraceptions to street children. The Catholic Church causes very real suffering amongst very poor people as a result of its impractical policies.
PHOTO CREDITS: Banner courtesy Oborseth/Wikimedia Commons; Crowd photo courtesy Ed Mutchnick; Polar bear courtesy Flickr/flickrfavorites; Martha, the last passenger pigeon — public domain (.); Coquí guajón courtesy Luis O. Nieves; Langes metalmark butterfly courtesy USFWS; Pacific walruses courtesy USFWS; Ribbon seal by Dr. Peter Boveng, NOAA; Sandplain gerardia courtesy USFWS; Orca courtesy NOAA; Florida panther courtesy USFWS; Pika courtesy Flickr/Lukas Vermeer; Forest Path courtesy Anja Jonsson/Flickr; MuleDeer courtesy Oborseth/WikimediaCommons; Horned Lizard courtesy Brad Smith/Flickr.