The War Against Parents:
What We Can Do for America's Beleaguered Moms and Dads
by Sylvia Ann Hewlett and Cornel West
The authors (a white woman and a black man) have come together to address what they see as the burning social issue of our time: the virtual abandonment of parents - poor and middle-class - by our business, political, and cultural elites. This is not "light" reading - which is appropriate for a book that is about a subject that is extremely serious - the crisis faced today by all children, especially poor and black children.
They explain that children's plight is not because parents are less devoted than they used to be - but because the whole world is pitted against them. That one of the best-kept secrets of the last thirty years is that big business, government, and the wider culture have waged a silent war against parents, undermining the work they do. They believe that parents have been left "twisting in the wind" by a society intent on other agendas. This book, however, is not just a visionary book; it's also very intimate. The authors share information about their own childhoods and talk candidly of their struggles to be a good mother and good father in our parent-hurting society.
My personal admiration and respect for Sylvia Hewlett began many years ago when I read some of her earlier books including "A Lesser Life: The Myth of Women's Liberation in America" and "When the Bough Breaks: The Cost of Neglecting Our Children." Part of the intensity and commitment she brings to her work is based on her own personal experience some years ago as a working mother who lost a pregnancy with twins due to pressure to work longer/harder than reasonable. She has turned her personal pain into a worthy crusade to help other working parents - and their children.