Lisa Miller

Mommy Is Busy Right Now

"Why are working mothers so furious all the time?" I was asked recently. An answer, not entirely rational, springs to mind: "Personally, I could use a travel agent." It's a joke, sort of.

Tough Love, Chinese Style

Amy Chua's email in-box has become the latest front in the mommy wars. Ever since "Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother," her warts-and-all book on parenting the Chinese way, inflamed the mommy-blogger universe with its publication last week, Chua has been under attack.

What Does 'Mama Grizzly' Really Mean?

What exactly is a "mama grizzly"? If the grizzlies are united by an anti-establishment fury rooted in maternal concern, then it's fair to ask what their records show they've done for kids. Not just for their own kids—which in Palin's case, especially, is well documented—but for America's kids, and their families as well. Even some Republicans wonder whether all the fearsome roars are merely election-year antics with little substance.

Glenn Beck, Mormons, and the Religious Right

Conventional wisdom in the last election cycle held that Mitt Romney could never win the hearts of America's conservative evangelicals—the Republican base—because he's Mormon, and evangelicals don't consider Mormons to be properly Christian. "I don't believe conservative Christians will vote for a Mormon, but that remains to be seen," James Dobson, then chairman of Focus on the Family, told radio host Laura Ingraham in the run-up to the 2008 contest.

'Stealth Jihad' Conveys Paranoia

Here is the latest semantic assault from the party that brought you "Islamo-facism" (circa 2005) and "Axis of Evil" (2002). The term "stealth jihad" is suddenly voguish among politically ambitious right-wingers who see President Obama's approach to terrorism as insufficient.

The Real War Over Ground Zero

At the eye of this storm stand two grieving mothers who don't ever want to hear the word "closure." Each remains convinced of the rightness of her position, and it is in their congenial conversation that one sees the issue laid bare.

The Cost of Being Jewish

It sounds like a Catskills-era joke with a Jewish lawyer in the punch line, but among Jewish leaders it's deadly serious. Why does it cost so much to be Jewish? At a time when American families are tightening household budgets, does it really make sense to continue to charge thousands of dollars to participate in Jewish life?

Belgium Bucks the Vatican

The Vatican has clearly stated that when investigating cases of sex abuse, "civil law concerning the reporting of crimes to the appropriate authorities should always be followed." History shows, however, that such cooperation is not always the norm. For more than a thousand years in Europe, church and state were rarely separate.

Saint Sarah

To white evangelical women, Sarah Palin is a modern-day prophet, preaching God, flag, and family—while remaking the religious right in her own image.