The passing of motion 236B

The meeting is called to order. A woman walks forward towards a microphone and starts to speak.

Members of the Council, we are here today to discuss motion 236B, which forbids by law the formation and keeping of Family. As you know, history has moved beyond this archaic form of human organisation, but even so a few instances of it remain. The strongest argument against the motion is of course that Law shouldn’t interfere with interpersonal relationships where possible, and that anyway such a law would be difficult to enforce. I would like to argue today that such a counterargument rests on a fundamental misunderstanding of the meaning of Family today and in the not-so-distant past.

To the historical layman, members of the Council, it may seem that Family is just another primitive construct following from the inability to produce new men and women by any means other than human childbirth. This furthermore implies that the remaining few pockets of Family simply have to catch up to history, and that this development should not be artificially rushed. To prove that this would be a grave mistake, let me start by going back even further in history. There have been many cultures in which Family was not as important a concept as later historians have interpreted it to be. The Spartans of ancient Greece for example, took boys and girls away from their mothers at age seven to start their training. From this point on they were effectively raised by the Spartan community, not any parents. So you see, members of the Council, childbirth does not imply parenthood.

Rather, the concept of family as we know it and as still survives in some ultraconservative corners of our Great Society, stems from the late 20th century. The global-capitalist tendency to break up communities as you know cleared the way for our Total Community, but we forget the loss and loneliness that marked this period of transition. Community was effectively reduced down to the family unit, with people having to rely largely on parents, spouses, and in later life even children for the financial support crucial to their survival. The family became claustrophobic as its members were never able to escape their often toxically codependent relationships with each other. Obviously, the young men and women were the greatest victims, as they were totally dependent on their parents for food, clothing, housing, and education. This created the child who, out of a survival instinct, strives to make itself beloved by the parent. Any psychoanalyst will tell you that the complexes created by this dynamic still reverberate today.

So I ask of you, members of the Council, in our Enlightened Era, why does this concept of Family still persist? Rather than view it as a harmless relic from a bygone age that will surely dissipate, let’s see it for what it really is: a trauma. A trauma that tragically repeats itself through the generations, the victims of the previous becoming the perpetrators of the next. I speak here now to implore you, members of the Council, to break this cycle. To protect our young men and women. To ban the Family for once and for all.

Motion 236B is passed unanimously.