The War on Children

[418] There emerges here a very important subtheme of the book. I’m talking about the victimization of children. It is easily the darkest chapter of American decline: There is a war on children in our country. The number of children aborted in this country is in the tens of millions. We have one of the worst infant mortality rates among industrialized countries (Ingraham, 2014). (See online: http:// blogs/ wonkblog/ wp/ 2014/ 09/ 29/ our-infant-mortality-rate-is-a-national-embarrassment/.) Sexual exploitation of minors is an epidemic. Mental illness in the young is skyrocketing. The homicide rate of children is astronomical (Lopez, 2014). There is just no denying it; it is no longer safe to be a kid in America. Dr. Whybrow writes, “In England, where I grew up in the 1950s, 80 percent of children went to school without supervision, walking or riding a bicycle” (Whybrow, 2005, p. 131). The same was true for me growing up here in the United States in the seventies. But it is no longer true— because it is no longer safe. If you watch some of the old black and white movies and television shows, they depict a childhood that is familiar to those of us who grew up in an earlier generation, a bygone era when times were more innocent. Kids walked to school by themselves. They went to the store by themselves. They went to the movies by themselves. They delivered newspapers by themselves. They were free to roam about the town without worrying about their safety. But those happier and freer days are gone, quite possibly forever. They have vanished from the landscape of contemporary culture. There is no safe haven for children on the new immoral landscape. This is, without a doubt, the most palpable proof (if you are a parent of young children) that our society is lost in darkness: We are not enlightened. We are not moral. We are lost. (The Immoral Landscape, pp.278–279)