Vladmir Putin is on a mission to raise Russia’s birth rate. Best way to do that? Hire Boyz II Men to croon the babies right into the bellies.
Russia’s birth rate has been climbing in recent years, but only after Putin made a hard push to get the motherland knocking boots again. After years of low fertility, which had actually reached crisis status in the country, Putin instituted a cash bonus of about £6000 for second (and beyond) births in 2007. From 2007 to 2010, that program pushed fertility rates up almost 20 percent.
Boyz II Men, whose 1994 album II sold more than 12 million copies and was probably released in Russia the other day, are melodically responsible for between 15 and 20 million births in the United States over the course of their 20-year careers (estimate may be inexact). So it makes sense that Putin, man of many action hero poses, would enlist them to give the country’s baby manufacturing a shot in the arm.
The band’s February 6th performance is part of a world tour, but specifically requested by Putin to help with Valentine’s Day-related romance. So basically, expect Moscow’s population to double some time around the middle of November. [Moscow Times via Telegraph]
Photo credits: Putin – AP Photo/RIA Novosti, Alexei Druzhinin; Boyz II Men – Jemal Countess / Getty Images Entertainment