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Crazy: A Father's Search Through America's Mental Health Madnessby Pete Earley
Synopses & Reviews
Liza Long is the mother of a child who has bipolar disorder. When she heard about the Newtown shooting, her first thought was, What if my son does that someday?” She wrote an emotional response to the tragedy, which the Boise State University online journal published as I Am Adam Lanza's Mother.” The post went viral, receiving 1.2 million Facebook likes, nearly 17,000 tweets, and 30,000 emails.
Now, in The Price of Silence, she takes a devastating look at how we address mental illness, especially in children, who are funneled through a system of education, mental healthcare, and juvenile detention that leads far too often to prison. In the end she asks one central question: If there's a poster child for cancer, why cant there be one for mental illness? The answer: stigma. She is speaking in a way that we cannot help but hear, and she won't stop until something changes.
Former Washington Post reporter Pete Earley had written extensively about the criminal justice system. But it was only when his own son-in the throes of a manic episode-broke into a neighbor's house that he learned what happens to mentally ill people who break a law.
This is the Earley family's compelling story, a troubling look at bureaucratic apathy and the countless thousands who suffer confinement instead of care, brutal conditions instead of treatment, in the "revolving doors" between hospital and jail. With mass deinstitutionalization, large numbers of state mental patients are homeless or in jail-an experience little better than the horrors of a century ago. Earley takes us directly into that experience-and into that of a father and award-winning journalist trying to fight for a better way.
Thrown headlong into the maze of contradictions and disparities that compriseAmerica's mental health system when his son was declared mentally ill, Earleypresents a remarkable piece of investigative journalism that demonstrates howAmerica's jails have become mental health hospitals.
About the Author
Former Washington Post reporter Pete Earley is also the author of Family of Spies and Confessions of a Spy, among other titles.
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