Yesterday, in the October 21 parliamentary session, MP Mergim Lushtaku from the Democratic Party of Kosovo showed how diligently he followed the drafting of the Civil Code. What interested and triggered his curiosity most was the Family Law.
Resembling a student who finally understands the lessons, he hastily skips the introductory part so that he can manifest his fascism, pretending to justify it based on scientific research.
Scientific knowledge in itself is not a shield to protect those who deliver fascist speeches at the parliament. Knowledge as well can be misused. When knowledge is sought with the sole purpose of confirming what “the knowledge seeker” believes to be indisputable, it is not a quest for knowledge anymore, but a persistent quest for people that caress one’s convictions.
MP Lushtaku searched for knowledge without having a question. It seems as if he knew it all. He embarked on his research expedition, already having the answers. Knowledge is sought in order to know; thus, in this case, the relationship he built with knowledge itself is dishonest.
He gathered all the scholars who agree with him. Therefore, in the beginning, when he says that most scholars agree with one another, he should have said that most scholars he chose to refer to agree with him. So, if the deputy truly did any research, he did injustice to knowledge with the very way he conducted the research.
“This form of marriage [same-sex marriage] thinks of children as optional and unimportant,” said Lushtaku. He did not think that only someone who really considers children unimportant would say that what he said yesterday.
Based on what he said, it seems that MP Lushtaku believes that his responsibility toward us, the people, is optional. Therefore, with the certainty that only someone who is indisputably convinced has, yesterday, he gave us an exhibit of fascism.
Word by word, why we heard an exhibition of fascism
To understand the fascism in MP Lushtaku’s speech, it is important to recall his exact words that were said in parliament:
“Most of the scholars agree that the children raised by biological parents in a stable marriage are better than the children in other family forms, whereas this form that you are trying to legalize is opposed by scientific argumentation. According to them [scientists], the legalization of same-sex marriage will have a catastrophic effect on society and the family as an institution. By nature, marriage is a heterosexual institution. Same-sex marriage indicates that children do not need mothers and fathers and that the meaning of marriage is not having babies.”
MP Lushtaku believes that there are good children and bad children, depending on who gives birth to and raises them. Based on this way of thinking, the most infamous fascists killed, massacred and cremated children. There is no reason to worry whether children have one parent, two, or three. We need to be worried when children are discussed in a fascist spirit. Rather than questioning the right of a single mother or that of two fathers to be parents, we need to question and reject outright, statements such as Lushtaku’s.
For Lushtaku, the fundamental and sublime aim of marriage as an institution is reproduction. It is precisely this mindset that is to be accounted for the unbearable lives of women who cannot have children, or choose not to have children. So, he institutionally fosters the practice of “disposing of” the women when they do not function as reproduction machinery.
According to Lushtaku, anyone who contradicts his personal convictions on what is natural or unnatural does not have a place in the law and is rendered unworthy of protection and ineligible for the right to life.
The ones who do the disposing are men, whereas the ones that are disposed of are women. Men who become more manly by the standards of the people’s representatives (here, the people are still men) throw women away, the exact same way as one would throw away machinery that does not produce anymore. These men are gently caressed by the words of people like MP Lushtaku. In order to fulfill their moral, national, and patriotic duty, they leave their wives and look for other women who can produce. Or, in their marriage, they add another woman and another one. According to MP Lushtaku, this constitutes a national sacrifice for men.
MP Lushtaku believes that heterosexual marriage is the only natural form of marriage. Consequently, the only one that is acceptable. Desirable. Legal. Here too, fascism is based on judging phenomena, behaviors, and individuals as “natural” and “unnatural.” When these foundations of the natural and unnatural constitute laws and institutional approaches, it means exactly what Lushtaku said, that anyone who contradicts his personal convictions on what is natural or unnatural does not have a place in the law and is rendered unworthy of protection and ineligible for the right to life. And the authority that decides this is a cis man, with a tie, in the parliament.
MP Lushtaku divests marriage from love, reinforcing the understanding and most importantly the experience of marriage as an institution through which the state, the government through representatives like Lushtaku control life and its reproduction. Thus, instead of regulating life in terms of quality and access to justice, they regulate it in terms of quantity, numbers.
He considers that the individuals who do not function according to his “natural” rules are second-hand citizens or even non-citizens.
Moreover, for Lushtaku, a stable family is based on his ideal portrait of a family, husband-wife-children. The life that goes on within the family is unimportant; the only important thing is for everyone to be included in the family portrait. So, it is unimportant whether, in this family portrait, the woman has a black eye. According to this rhetoric, family at its core should exist only inside this composition, and any other form is erroneous. The deputy refuses to acknowledge that the experience of the family is a choice. For him, the sacred family becomes desecrated and cannot remain the same if it is composed of two men with no children, or two women with no children, or a man and a woman with no children, or whatever other way of having a family that does not correspond with his way of feeling it.
MP Lushtaku believes that the individuals who do not function according to his “natural” rules are secondhand citizens or even noncitizens. When you are a noncitizen in a country, it means that you are not entitled to rights, not treated equally, and do not have access to life. When you do not have access to life, you are a nonhuman. A state that treats one as a nonhuman turns the right of being a citizen into a privilege. According to Lushtaku, even though single mothers gave birth to their children, they raise bad children and are not worthy of being citizens. This means that LGBTIQ+ people are unwanted in this country. The same stands for divorced people. Unmarried people.
Technically, this makes only men (cis men) good citizens. In the name of the nationwide morality that, according to him, is based on the preservation of the husband-wife-children family form, the reproduction of reductionist family values — women are invited to tolerate oppression and stay in their families. Even if these families kill. This means that Lushtaku granted himself the right to decide who deserves to be human and who does not. He became a self-proclaimed authority who decides whose life is legal and whose life is illegal. Given his power, he can exercise this assumed right through his vote.
Let’s recall another fascist part of his speech at the parliament:
“The KLA struggle would not have been successful without the mobilization of many young people. They were the result of a healthy Albanian family, raised with moral, national, and patriotic values. It can be noticed that in the last five years, the natality rate has decreased. This issue should concern this parliament and other institutions. There were 5,000 fewer children born in 2019, and this should be addressed from us as deputies and representatives of the people.”
Deputy Lushtaku is afraid that the nation and people he represents will diminish. He manifests his fear by deploying a text-book nationalistic rhetoric when talking about natality. If we dig deeper into this, it means that the value of citizens is measured by the number of children they reproduce, and consequently, with the number of children they can send as soldiers to war.
Men are better suited for wars. So, preferably, along with the increase of the birthrate, women should give birth to men so that mothers could raise them to take up arms later. Not by chance, most of the time in wars, we hear phrases such as, “our mothers,” “motherland,” “the land that raised us.” These are not sole manifestations of unconditional love toward the woman. Same, as Lushtaku considers reproduction to be the sublime aim of marriage, here the ultimate purpose of a woman is considered to be childbearing. The woman becomes great for the nation when she gives birth, and she shrinks and has no place in the nation when she does not give birth.
And in this way, societies where soldiers are heroes, whereas raped women are whores — are created.
If we look at nationalism and militarism, women here are reduced to the role of reproduction, and are instrumentalized for this role. Consequently, they are rendered unworthy if they do not fulfill this role. This means that in our parliament, women are chess pieces. Chess is played by men. The stage of our parliament is the chessboard. Women are talked about, when they do not bear children.
In the end, Lushtaku calls on his fellow representatives of the people to be concerned about the low birthrate considering this a “national failure” that needs to be addressed as soon as possible. He worries that our “seed is diminishing.” Now, this is not genocide, but the same mindset is used in genocide, the extermination of the seeds. Women are raped in order to “destroy the seed.” At the same time, women are pressured to bear children in order to “preserve the seed.” And in this way, societies where soldiers are heroes, whereas raped women are whores — are created.
How does MP Lushtaku think to address this issue? How do families become stimulated to bear children? Why? What happens with the ones who do not want children? They get thrown onto the trash heap?
And, our representative, MP Lushtaku, closes it all with a brilliant sentence that his fellow scholars would covet. He concludes his exhibition in fascism consoling our hearts by saying that he won’t vote for the Civil Code because it contradicts his personal convictions. Perhaps, during his so-called scientific research, he turned a blind eye when he passed by Nietzsche and did not read his saying that “Convictions are more dangerous foes of truth than lies.”
Convinced and steadfast, as MP Lushtaku, are dictators who in the name of their convictions, act like dictators.
When fascists’ voice echoes on the stage that belongs to the people, the people demand their voice. And their voice will echo louder.
Feature image: Atdhe Mulla / K2.0.