A few weeks ago the Chief Rabbi, Jonathan Sacks, made a speech which generated a fair bit of controversy. Here’s why:

“Parenthood,” he said, “involves massive sacrifice: of money, attention, time and emotional energy. Where today, in European culture with its consumerism and its instant gratification – ‘because you’re worth it’ – in that culture, where will you find space for the concept of sacrifice for the sake of generations not yet born?”

In a seemingly unrelated incident, a spokesman for a teachers’ union recently responded to the government’s plans to guarantee (!) that all children will receive a good education by saying the move will turn into a “whingers’ charter” for more litigious parents.

Finally, it is becoming increasingly difficult to resolve the issue of illegal downloading (of music, films etc) partly because one of the main obstacles is the belief of young people that they are entitled to have pretty much whatever they wish.

All these snippets are, of course, closely linked to each other and their links are explored in my novel. So I guess I ought to keep my eyes on the silver lining and tell myself that as long as headlines like the ones above remain in heavy circulation, one day, before too long, someone’s going to pounce on my book. Or maybe I should send a copy of The Only Children to Jonathan Sacks. He’s got friends in high places.

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