Seriously? Did anyone actually read the article? ANY
one? "The culture of disrespect in which American kids are now immersed is new, and it’s toxic." And where is it centered? On the very outlets that are touting the book! "Stuart Varney on Fox Business", Town Hall, Wall Street Journal Opinion pages... Donald Trump? "it’s now common to find 10-year-olds from ‘good’ families in ‘good’ neighborhoods who say “shut up” to their parents." - Yeah, led by the example of those parents who follow "reality TV" like it's... real; who watch FOX and read Town Hall and think that it is the "majority view" and who support candidates who will espouse any lie in an effort to gain a well-paying government position for which they don't have to have qualifications or do any actual work.
I happen to agree with one aspect of the premise, and that is that there should be mutual respect between a parent and a child. That is what a loving family does. But what is the author's solution?
Prioritize participation in a church or synagogue which teaches respect for authority. (emphasis added).
· Model a culture of respect within the home [i.e., show them who's boss!]
· Instead of boosting self-esteem, teach humility. Fight the contemporary cultural imperative to be “awesome”
While I am also uneasy about the spread of disrespect in the culture, I am not deluded about its sources. It may very well be that the book is a good one, and the the advice within it is sound, and there are practical solutions to some of the vexing problems of parenting, (see, e.g., New York Journal of Books
). I even agree with the author's sentiments that
“It is the parent’s responsibility not only to feed, clothe, and shelter the child,” writes the author, “but also to acculturate the child, to instill a sense of virtue and a longing for integrity, and to teach the meaning of life according to the parent’s best understanding.”
I always consider the source. When it is touted by conservative outlets who provide their own "spin"; when the author seeks support from those outlets, and touts the work of others who have a little more draconian view of the world, I get suspicious. It seems like just another example of taking something potentially worthy and giving it a political spin for nefarious purposes.