“Motherhood is the first and last line of defense against totalitarianism.” So says Stella Morabito in The Federalist, where she takes up the question of why tyrants always try to undermine the family and explains how mothers are a bulwark for liberty.From Stella Morabito, A Little Mother Prevents Big Brother, The Federalist:
Motherhood is the first and last line of defense against totalitarianism. If you think this statement sounds over the top, you ought to ponder why the family has always been the ultimate target of tyrannical systems of government such as communism. Advocates of cultural Marxism tend to view families as akin to subversive cells that get in the way of centralized state power.
The driving force in each of those “cells” is a devoted flesh-and-blood mother who defends, nurtures, strengthens, and teaches her children well. She magnifies this power by teaming up with the child’s father in that effort. Such a family represents, at the most elemental level, the “little platoon” philosopher Edmund Burke referred to:
To be attached to the subdivision, to love the little platoon we belong to in society, is the first principle (the germ as it were) of public affections. It is the first link in the series by which we proceed towards a love to our country, and to mankind. The interest of that portion of social arrangement is a trust in the hands of all those who compose it; and as none but bad men would justify it in abuse, none but traitors would barter it away for their own personal advantage.
As healthy, cohesive families go forth into the world as little platoons, they are a force for goodwill and real justice in society, broadcasting by example and by good works into the culture at large. They begin with mothers who cultivate virtue and a sense of uniqueness in their children. In a very real sense, mothers are the ultimate force for de-centralizing and distributing power in society. Their influence sets virtuous communities in motion.