Ed: Please read all this article. If there is a 'something' these days that should concern Christians as much as social issues in Wilberforce's day, it is surely the issues identified here (read the whole article, though).
[...] There’s no getting round the figure of the absent father. It’s a factor that keeps coming up, not just here in inner London, but in very different parts of the country where teachers, education authorities and an almost countless array of agencies are trying to help some deeply troubled youths to help themselves. People observe that in the Damilola Taylor and Stephen Lawrence murder cases, almost all the suspects came from fatherless homes. The other constant refrain is a more general sense that no one seems to care any more. It’s not new, but it’s more specific than it used to be. In Leeds, Gary Nixon, team leader of EOTAS (Education Other Than at School) admits he is aware of “sounding like an old fellow” when he says that things like neighbourly support, the role of the Auntie figure, respect for authority in all its guises have all sunk dramatically in the past 20 years. But he also says that in his long experience in social work and education, it is the young people themselves who now want a return to older values.
Whatever the causes of the problems which institutions like the academy are trying to tackle, few doubt that they are both pressing and expensive. Former Tory leader Iain Duncan Smith’s social justice policy group estimates that the financial cost to the British taxpayer of family breakdown, educational failure and drug and alcohol addiction is just over £100 billion; in other words the same as our expenditure on the National Health Service. Read more