Some may define egalitarianism as “belief in the equality of all people, especially in political, social, or economic life,” but a more precise definition for the contemporary parlance would be “belief that every person should have equal access to every opportunity in every circumstance imaginable.” To provide such a society for our children, to build them a shining egalitarian city on a level playing field, one major progress-impeding super villain needs defeating.
Even more so than the misogynistic Christian church or the anti-gay GOP, the chief enemy of egalitarianism is nature. Historic Christianity only makes it hard for women to be pastors, but nature makes it hard for women to be soldiers, firefighters, lumberjacks, and anything else that requires masculine levels of upper body strength. Republicans may pass laws letting bakers deny service for gay weddings, but nature imposes laws denying two pairs of ovaries the power to procreate. But the greatest way that nature breeds inequality is by filling us with the desire to love the children that have resulted from our breeding.
Loving Your Children Hurts Others
Not all parents are equally adept at loving their children, as anyone who’s ever observed a crowded McDonald’s play place knows. And when those with superior nurturing skills unleash them on their offspring, the results are horrific, producing children with higher levels of happiness, education, and achievement than their contemporaries. One might argue that the solution to this problem is to encourage bad parents to work harder at loving their children, but such a heartless, radical notion can’t be taken any more seriously than the suggestion that a woman who can’t pass a physical fitness test should increase her bench-press regimen like other women have done instead of putting people at risk. Rather, the best way to achieve an egalitarian society is for those who can shoot the highest to quit showing off and start aiming lower.
“Is having a loving family an unfair advantage?” This is the titular question posed in a recent article published by the Australia Broadcasting Corporation, where philosopher Adam Swift comments that parents who read to their children at night might want to consider the long-term effects. After noting that “the difference between those who get bedtime stories and those who don’t—the difference in their life chances—is bigger than the difference between those who get elite private schooling and those that don’t,” Swift goes on to suggest, “I don’t think parents reading their children bedtime stories should constantly have in their minds the way that they are unfairly disadvantaging other people’s children, but I think they should have that thought occasionally.”
Although he should be commended for bringing awareness to the dangers of reading Roald Dahl to your children when the neighbors are watching “Monday Night Raw” with theirs, Swift must also be criticized for stopping short of demanding that parents dumb down family time for the sake of the greater good. To build a truly egalitarian society, this is precisely what we must do. In fact, we must go even further. In addition to impeding the intellectual development of advantaged children to level the playing field, here are four more things parents must do to crush the prejudice of nature and raise truly egalitarian children.
1. Stop Bathing Your Children
In a fair and just society, all people should be free to enter any relationship they desire without interference from the state. It therefore follows that, in an equally fair and just society, those same people should be free to enter any relationship they desire without interference from the person they’re trying to enter a relationship with.
Sadly, history is littered with countless examples of women who have refused the romantic advances of certain men simply because they smelled like cigarettes and cat urine. If we’re going to combat the societal blight of malodorous men being denied equal opportunities for mating, we must begin leveling the playing field now by keeping our kids out of the tub, as such well-intentioned bathing culturally conditions our children to believe that it’s “bad” to “smell” like animal waste.
2. Stop Giving Them Fruits and Vegetables
Since an individual’s eating habits are established at an early age, it’s of paramount importance that those who would feed their sons and daughters healthy foods recognize they are unfairly disadvantaging the children of parents who believe a balanced breakfast consists of a couple Slim Jims and an Oreo McFlurry.
Just as it’s not fair for intellectually advanced parents to pass their values onto their children, it’s also not fair for the nutritiously minded to give their offspring a better shot at not dying of heart disease than those kids whose parents curse Michelle Obama’s love of kale while pouring gravy on their Cocoa Puffs. So start substituting rib tips for apple slices in Junior’s lunch. It’s the least you can do to balance the societal scales.
3. Stop Teaching Your Children Manners
Of all the people you’ve known who were late for a job interview, or were arrogant, angry, or vulgar during it, how many of them were passed over in favor of someone who showed up on time and exhibited the virtues of humility, kindness, and decency? Should we really continue giving people a leg up in society simply because, by random chance, they were born to parents who taught them to carry themselves with dignity and to treat other people with respect?
As socialist governments throughout the world have proven with great success, you can quickly eliminate poverty by taking money from the rich and giving it to the poor. But manners aren’t so easily redistributed, so the only way to correct society’s refusal to give equal job opportunities to the boorish is for all of the gainfully employed to start peppering our resumes with a few more coffee stains and curse words.
4. Stop Raising Them
If Billy’s parents are more loving than Joey’s, we should acknowledge that Billy has an unfair advantage over Joey. But if Joey’s parents are more existent than Suzie’s, we should also acknowledge that Joey has some non-orphan privilege to check. Just as we should be willing to die of smoke inhalation to prevent a lady firefighter from feeling bad about not being able to carry us on her back, we should also be willing to abandon our children in order to make kids who have already been abandoned feel less socially ostracized.
Granted, there’s a good chance that a nation full of parentless children will quickly become a hellish wasteland of sorrow and brutality that would give the zombies on “The Walking Dead” nightmares. But the important thing is that our lives would all be equally abominable, and achieving such equality would certainly make it worthwhile to duck out of the hospital right after the umbilical cord was cut.
Male-only clergy rosters and religious freedom bills are certainly enemies of equality that must be destroyed. But the sins of the Church and the bigotry of the GOP pale in comparison to the greater threat that comes from a natural world that inexplicably gives women smaller biceps than men, callously refuses to let gay couples procreate, and, above all, perpetuates unfairness by making children smarter just because their parents read them “Go Dog Go” instead of Jerry Springer transcripts. However, if we all commit to keeping our children dumb, smelly, unhealthy, untactful, and emotionally shattered, nature won’t be able to stop us from creating that glorious egalitarian paradise where no one is unfairly disadvantaged because everyone is equally miserable.