It’s no accident that communists vehemently oppose family and parenting.
The importance of these social institutions can’t be overstated, serving as an essential foundation for the nurturing and protection of children that foments a stable, healthy society. Such values are a direct threat to communist hegemony.
As a parent, I can attest to the unconditional love one feels for one’s children. It’s something most parents can relate to. It creates unsurpassed altruism and loyalty within the family unit—a powerful bond that further threatens the collective obedience demanded by totalitarian ideologies such as communism.
It’s for this reason that communists oppose the family, seeking to not only destroy it, but to also usurp the role that parents play in raising children. By doing this, they can then build their new society from the old, as a new order is created out of their chaos.
‘The Communist Manifesto’
Communist hostility to family and parenting is well-documented historically, albeit dismissed and downplayed by apologists. Merely reading “The Communist Manifesto” will put these denials to rest, wherein Chapter Two states: “Abolition of the family! Even the most radical flare up at this infamous proposal of the Communists.”
The “Manifesto” goes on to claim that the family is based on capital and private gain, stating that “the bourgeois family will vanish as a matter of course when its complement vanishes, and both will vanish with the vanishing of capital.” Communists believed that this would be a liberating process, in which children would be “freed” from their parents.
The writers of the “Manifesto,” Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, dismiss any objections to their views with, “Do you charge us with wanting to stop the exploitation of children by their parents? To this crime, we plead guilty.”
Some say it was Engels who truly wanted to abolish the family, but since a great deal of communist ideology is dedicated to the cultural transformation of society (the family being a primary focus), it would be delusional to think Marx was a passive bystander. It is indeed true that Engels elaborated further with his seminal treatise “The Origin of the Family, Private Property & the State,” but Marx himself was just as passionate about cultural destruction. In fact, Marxism is a far more a cultural than an economic ideology.
Marx and Engels believed that family is the bedrock of “bourgeois,” “capitalist” society. They argued that “family exists only among the bourgeoisie” and that there is a “practical absence of the family among the proletarians, and in public prostitution.” To correct this, they believed the family should be replaced by communal living, where individuals weren’t bound by family life.
No longer would relationships be monogamous, dismissing protests by saying that the bourgeoisie “take the greatest pleasure in seducing each other’s wives.” Like the modern left, moral arguments are deflected right back at opponents, as though two wrongs make a right.
The family is further undermined in the “Manifesto” with the claim that “the bourgeois sees his wife [as] a mere instrument of production.” The bleak and oppressive outlook on family life that was set out in the “Manifesto,” coupled with Engels’s treatise, would later become the blueprint for modern feminism. Some will argue that feminism initially had noble intentions, although, by the second wave of the 1960s, that was well and truly sidelined by Marxist thought.
Revolutionary Maoists who took power in China were also inspired by radical opposition to the family. Maoism was fundamentally an extension of Marxist-Leninism adapted for Chinese nationalism, yet retained core aspects of communist thought that extended to cultural life. It became common for Marxist revolutionaries in the 20th century to lie about their true ideological beliefs until they were in power, just as we saw in Cuba, Cambodia, and elsewhere.
By the Great Leap Forward, around the same time as second-wave feminism was taking off, this façade was abandoned for a collectivist-style government that centralized everything in Chinese society. As part of this policy, private farming was abolished and replaced with agricultural collectivization. Parents were then forced to work painfully long hours while state caretakers oversaw their children. Tens of millions starved as Chairman Mao refused to acknowledge the horrendous suffering this caused.
Childcare is now normalized because women have been systematically indoctrinated to think that being a stay-at-home mother is a wasted life. Many studies demonstrate that children suffer when they aren’t taken care of by parents in their early years and that anything more than around eight hours a week for preschool children can be harmful.
As you can imagine, counter studies attempt to refute this, just like anything else that contradicts far-left ideology. Some parents are fortunate enough to have grandparents to step in, but many spend a fortune on childcare that takes a large percentage of their earnings to pay for. Alternatively, this is funded by taxpayers, adding to the bloated expenditure of big government. Where did this mentality come from, as parents miss out on the precious early years of their children’s growing up? The answer is obvious for those who research communism.
The more socialist the government, the more it encroaches on family life, from Stalin’s Young Pioneers of the Soviet Union that turned youth organizations into instruments of indoctrination, to the Kibbutzim of Israel—where collectives share everything from clothing to housing, as family life is replaced with communal living. Many call this cradle-to-grave system a “nanny state,” although this is a mere euphemism for an Orwellian-style government that abhors any checks and balances to the state.
A more recent example of this mission creep into family life is the Scottish National Party’s attempt to introduce the named person scheme in 2016. What this amounts to is another Orwellian euphemism. In this instance, it permits state monitoring of family life, as well as transference of the rights of parents to a state official, who could be anyone from a teacher to a social worker. A named person would be allocated for each family, with the ability to overrule the judgment of parents, keep private records on family life, and visit the home without parental consent. While the SNP claims the scheme isn’t compulsory, each child would have an allocated named person by law, making any objections irrelevant.
Thankfully, the scheme was deemed illegal by the UK Supreme Court, but that hasn’t stopped the SNP from trying to introduce it through the backdoor. The SNP is part of a grim legacy of communism wrapped up in faux-nationalism, just like Maoists in China. Wherever communists go, you’ll find that family life is undermined and attacked, be it culturally or legally.
But without the foundation of good parenting in a traditional family environment, society will invariably become too weak to survive.
Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.