Critics have raised concerns about the Ezzos' lack of professional qualifications and patterns of behavior former associates say should disqualify the Ezzos from public ministry.
Moreover, Anne Marie and Gary Ezzo have been estranged from both of their adult children for the last decade. Thus, the Ezzos lack pertinent professional AND personal qualifications for directing other parents.
Summary of Concerns
- The Ezzos claim to be professionals, but have little or no professional accreditation or accountability. Nevertheless, Babywise claims that its plan sets "a new course for behavioral pediatrics," and brings "a major paradigm shift" to a health care specialty, the specialty of breastfeeding management. The Ezzos dismiss the professional warnings about their recommendations as merely the product of professional jealousy or bias.
- Lack of academic ethics. Ezzo pursues a scholarly approach to his subject, but frequently misdefines terms and misrepresents the views of others. Footnotes and quotations in the texts often fail to support Ezzo's points when their context is examined. The Ezzos tout private, unpublished research and contrast the experience of imaginary children to prove the safety and efficacy of their method. Their books are self-published so there is no editorial oversight to correct these problems.
- Divisive behavior. Ezzo is currently excommunicated from an evangelical Christian church in California and has been subject to church discipline processes in two other churches in which he held leadership positions. The leaders of all three cited patterns of behavior including divisiveness, untruthfulness, and the spread of malicious gossip in retaliation for attempts to hold him accountable. Two of his former pastors have stated their belief that Ezzo is unfit for public ministry.
- Denigrating those who disagree. Ezzo has attacked, denigrated and spread malicious and false gossip about parents, reporters, medical professionals and others who dare to disagree with and/or criticize his material.
- Untruthfulness. He has been caught in lies about a wide variety of things, including claiming, in writing, a degree he never earned, emailing slanderous statements about his former church while portraying his departure from it as quiet and gracious, and plagiarism.
His family does not reflect the promises in his books. The Ezzos contend that when parents implement their methods with young children, their reward will be friendship with their adult children. But Anne Marie and Gary Ezzo have been estranged from their children for the past decade.
"Unprepared to Teach Parenting"
by Kathleen Terner, Christianity Today
"Adventures in Ezzoland"
by Frank York, Midwest Christian Outreach
Timeline of the Ezzo Controversy
Documentation linked in timeline format