Why Progressives Are Trying to Destroy the Family (and commentary below)

by Philip Carl Salzman, Epoch Times, Nov. 2, 2021

Patriarchy, Gender Roles and Marxism: An Educational ...

It has long been policy among Marxist progressives, socialists, and communists to undermine and destroy the family. The reason is obvious: When your goal is to vest all power in the government, any independent organization, such as the family, that retains the loyalty of citizens withholds power from the government. The commitments of families are to its members, not to the government, and Marxists think that this should be forbidden.

[NB – Here is a list of the things Marx wanted to abolish: the family, private property, individuality, eternal truths (to be replaced with moral relativism), nation-states, the past (i.e., redefining history according to Marxist worldview).

Progressivism wants these things too but may be viewed as an interim stage to full Communism. Many of its adherents are not aware of its ultimate trajectory which would mean the end of much of the freedom and prosperity they now enjoy.

They view progress not in economic terms as much as in cultural Marxist terms (i.e., diversity, equity). Most of them seem to be Fabian socialists (not true Marxists) who want to retain the benefits of capitalism through “democratic socialism” (i.e., an endless welfare state).

In reality, the final form it will take is corporate capitalism and technocratic autocracy, as in China. The state will never be abolished; it will just be increasingly centralized, gaining absolute power over all our lives (if we let it).]

The self-proclaimed Marxist Black Lives Matter declared on its website, until it saw fit to scrub it off, that one of its objectives, along with disbanding the police, was destroying the two-parent family. Two-parent families are rare among African Americans, but in spite of poor academic performances, a high level of gang membership, a high level of incarceration, and a horrific rate of violent murder among African American youth, Black Lives Matter’s view is that one-parent families are a good plan. Black Lives Matter thinks that all will be fine (for them) once they take over.

Totalitarian societies such as National Socialist Germany, the Soviet Union, Soviet Eastern Europe, and communist China strived to undermine family loyalties, encouraging family members to inform on one another. Any anti-government sentiment, or even insufficiently strong pro-government sentiment, are grounds for re-education and punishment. Children are taught in government schools to vet their parents, and report them to the authorities if they’re not enthusiastically patriotic.

Kibbutzim in Israel were founded on the communist model. Everything was handled at the community level; nothing was left to the family unit: Cooking was communal, as was eating in the community cafeteria. Children resided and were reared in the community children’s house. But over the next decades, Kibbutzniks slowly had a change of heart, and mothers wanted more time with their children, first weekends, then full-time family apartments. Children, too, when they hit adolescence, were unwilling to reside and dress and undress in front of children of the opposite sex. Eventually, unisex overalls were exchanged for clothes suitable for binary gender roles.

The logic of feminism, having incorporated Marxist class conflict for its identity politics, disparages men, marriage, motherhood, and families. What holds the greatest value for feminism is being able to kill unborn children. The feminist goal is not to support the government, but to take over the government, so that females can rule. The family stands in the way, so it has to go.

The two-parent family was the dominant form of the family, in all racial and ethnic groups, during the first half of the 20th century. But by the 21st century, the two-parent family was prominent only among Asian Americans and white Americans, with single-parent families a major percentage among Hispanics, Native Americans, and African Americans.

The two-parent family was also stripped down in both structure and function. In traditional societies in the Middle East, Asia, the Pacific, and elsewhere, families were either multigenerational, compound, or extended, with a large number of relatives providing a wider family within which the two-parent family was nested. In the 21st century, two-parent families, not to mention single-parent families, were in many cases on their own. This is largely the result of the spatial and social mobility facilitated and even required by an advanced industrial and post-industrial economy.

The traditional family was the basic productive unit of society, usually engaged in agricultural production. Children provided the necessary manpower to get the labor-intensive, multiple tasks done. Think of an American or Canadian family farm at the turn of the 20th century. Male children also provided the strong arms of the family militia that would defend, if necessary, the members and property of the family. In the 21st century, child labor and military defense are no longer functions of the family.

What remains of the functions of family in the North American 21st century is the establishment of a domestic household and the rearing and socializing of children, usually a small number of children, as they’re financial liabilities rather than assets. Many people under the influence of feminism choose not to marry or to establish a household with others, but instead reside as individuals, which indicates a loss of family households. Many single women decide to have children on their own, forming single-parent households. But children are increasingly under the authority, not of their parents, but of civic and governmental authorities, stripping parents of the child-rearing function.

Educational bureaucrats, school boards, and teacher’s unions engage in collusion to take control of children’s lives, sidelining parents who are purposely kept in the dark regarding what students are taught and how students’ lives are managed. These bureaucrats and officials share the radical ideologies of the extremist faculties of education in which they were trained.

Thus, we see bureaucrats, unions, and school boards pushing political ideologies on K-12 students. These include racist “critical race theory” that condemns little white children as privileged oppressors and little black children as victims who have no control over their lives. Schools also push children into “transitioning” from their birth sex to an imagined alternative sex, smoothing the way for puberty-blocking hormone treatments and disfiguring plastic surgery, all hidden from children’s parents. Schools now specialize in systemic programs of child abuse.

These educational officials also collude with friendly state and federal administrations, such as the Biden administration, which concur with the radical ideologies and wish to advance them. The point of this collusion among officials and governments is to wrench all children away from their parents, making them dependent on the government, in which the school officials are low-level members. This is a major step in destroying the family and making the government all-powerful, smoothing the way to despotic socialism and communism.

My commentary

I looked for progressive/feminist quotations critical of the nuclear family, to see if this article above is true, and there are many such statements online.

They don’t all envision the abolition of the family entirely, as the Khmer Rouge did (it effectively replaced the traditional family with the state). Instead, progressive Leftists envisage a version of the family that encompasses the complexity and “diversity” of many of today’s non-traditional family groupings, including the single-parent family, two dads or two moms, and multiple variations.

Children in a school set up by the Khmer Rouge, as depicted in the film The Killing Fields.
They learn to abolish to family symbolically by crossing out the parents.

I have no problem with that. I am certainly not against people having the liberty to define themselves and their families as they wish, but (in my humble opinion) there are three problems with cultural Marxist progressives/radical feminists trying to re-define the family, at least the way many of them are doing it.

(1) it’s been proven that the presence of a father figure is valuable for children, e.g., “In the last decade, the social sciences have begun
recognizing and examining the crucial role that fathers play in child development and family dynamics

(2) the adoption of this new version of the family is often framed as a rejection of the traditional nuclear family by its advocates — and that is not ‘diverse’;

(3) it can be used as a transitional phrase to the complete abolition of the family (as in some Communist states).

We have witnessed the slow disintegration of the family over the last few decades due to the rise of secularism and the loss of church authority. This is consistent with cultural Marxism: Leftism should be understood as a functional religion that demands complete obedience and ideological commitment.

Ideally, progressive families wouldn’t be framed as anti-traditional or anti-father (misandric) or are not used as a stepping stone to the abolition of the family.

Sometimes, the feminist statements go too far, by attacking and seeking to destroy the traditional family. They often seem to equate tradition with the nuclear family, although traditional families can also be extended (i.e, not nuclear). Here is an example of a negative statement:

“The nuclear family must be destroyed… Whatever its ultimate meaning, the break-up of families now is an objectively revolutionary process” – Linda Gordon, American feminist and historian.

It was the so-called second wave of feminists, which split into the mainstream and the so-called radical branches. The latter was often Marxist and strongly misandric (man-hating).

Second-wave feminism had some merit and successes in terms of achieving equality in the workplace and giving some abused women the courage to leave their abusers, but the radical branch (which has re-expressed itself anew in recent years) was violent and hateful.

A major voice for it was Andrea Dworkin. I actually read many of her books, a few years ago, with an open mind. She’s a good writer, but it’s clear that she hates men, sees them all as rapists, and wanted to destroy them — especially in her book Our Blood (which you can read here).

This is what Dworkin had to say about the nuclear family: “We must refuse to submit to those institutions which are by definition sexist – marriage, the nuclear family, religions built on the myth of feminine evil.” Dworkin is famous (or infamous) for saying that all sex is rape and marriage is the enslavement of women and that all men are potential rapists:

In the list of quotations, the one I found most interesting, for shedding light on our current global predicament (medical tyranny) is from the progressive billionaire Ted Turner who said:

The next most dangerous thing [after nuclear proliferation] is probably … global warming, and then, right behind that are overpopulation we need to get serious about family planning-and trying to alleviate poverty, to get clean, renewable energy, probably with solar panels to the billion and a half people in the world who don’t have access to electricity.

What I find interesting is that he was part of the so-called Good Club that in 2009 met with Bill Gates to discuss how to solve climate change and overpopulation. “Family planning” is shorthand for re-educating traditional societies to accept birth control and abortion, and a shift from traditional patriarchal societies to secular modernity.

“Family planning” is seen by its advocates as a humane way to curb human population growth in developing nations (birth rates are shrinking in the global North). However, it can be viewed as conceited for globalists to try to impose their vision of how people should live on ancient traditional cultures.

The complete destruction of traditional marriage and the nuclear family is the ‘revolutionary or utopian’ goal of feminism” — Kate Millett, American feminist.

I’m passionately opposed to the nuclear family, with its mom and dad and their 2.4 children. I think it’s the most neurotic lifestyle ever developed” — Germaine Greer, American feminist, and author.

The transition to a salaried workforce had doomed the nuclear family and led to the complete atomization of society“— Michel Houellebecq, French author. I am not sure that Houellebecq is accurate in saying this. He might be right, but I tend to think the end of the nuclear family in the West is more the result of secularization and the rise of feminism than economic factors.

“Goldilocks. There lived a family of bears together anthropomorphically in a little cottage as a nuclear family. They were very sorry about this, of course, since the nuclear family has traditionally served to enslave womyn, instill a self-righteous moralism in its members, and imprint rigid notions of heterosexualist roles onto the next generation. [They named] their offspring the non-gender-specific Baby.” — James Finn Garner. Garner is a satirist, author of Politically Correct Bedtime Stories. This description of the story of Goldilocks is satirical.

Final notes:

This is my article on how ideological Leftism treats children like human sacrifices.

The best video series critical of feminism on youtube was The Fiamengo Files, by Janice Fiamengo, but they took it down. Now the videos can be seen at this link.

Here is a link to Eleni (1985), a moving and true story of a mother who was murdered by the Communists during the Greek Civil War. The Communists were trying to break apart families. You can view other anti-Communist movies here.

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