HotFreeBooks.com
Community Civics and Rural Life
by Arthur W. Dunn
Previous Part     1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9     Next Part
Home - Random Browse

Is your class a community? (Apply the definition given above.) What common interests does it have? Has it any government or laws? Is your school a community? Apply the same tests as above.

Is your home a community? What are some of its common interests? Are there laws in your family?

What are some of the things in which your family and your nearest neighbors have a common interest because of living close together? Do your family and your neighbors work together to provide for these interests?

What are some of the things in which all the people of your city or village (or the one nearest to you) have a common interest, and which the city, or village, government helps to provide for?

INTERDEPENDENCE OF RURAL AND CITY COMMUNITIES

A community of farmers has interests of its own, largely centering around farming activities, or the social life of the local neighborhood. A few miles away is a village or city whose people also have their own peculiar interests, such as the lighting of the streets at night, or the building of a new high school, or the election of a mayor. Yet there are interests common to both the farming community and the city community. The city is dependent upon the country for its food supply, and the farmers are dependent upon the city for their market. Probably some of the farmers send their children to the city schools. Thus city and rural communities are bound together into a larger community with interests common to both.

In the early days of western settlement a community was founded in Illinois. It was an agricultural community, but in the midst of it a village grew, which in the course of time became a small city. One of the first settlers was a young farmer with a mechanical turn of mind. He began experimenting to improve the methods of planting grain. The result was the invention of a corn planter, the manufacture of which became one of the chief industries of the growing city, employing hundreds of men and sending machines to all parts of the world. Another young farmer invented a better plow than those which had been in use, the manufacture of which became another of the city's industries. In those pioneer days each family usually made its own brooms, but one young man in this community earned his way through the local college by making brooms from corn raised on the college farm. The college cornfield disappeared in the course of time, but on one part of it there grew up a broom factory employing a large number of workmen. These city industries were thus literally "children of the soil," and the city's prosperity depended upon the agriculture of the surrounding region. On the other hand, the city provided the farmers with improved plows and corn planters, furnished them an immediate market for their products, supplied them with goods through its shops and stores, and gave education to hundreds of farmers' children in its schools and college.

NEED FOR RURAL AND CITY TEAMWORK

Sometimes jealousies and antagonisms arise between small neighboring communities, and especially between rural and city communities. This interferes with the progress of both communities, and of the larger community of which each is a part. It may be proposed to build a township high school. It is natural that the several communities that comprise the township should each want it. But the interest of the entire township should be considered in determining the location of the school, and not merely the advantage of one local district as against others. It sometimes happens that the people of a city are exempted from taxation for county purposes outside of the city, although the benefits would be almost, if not quite as great, for the city as for the country. This sort of thing serves to set off city and country against each other instead of binding them together to their mutual advantage. The case of Christian County, Kentucky, described in Chapter III, is an excellent illustration of teamwork between city and country in the interest of the entire county, and of the results achieved by it.

SMALL COMMUNITIES UNITE IN LARGE ONES

In this chapter there are three maps of Dane County, Wisconsin, which show how small communities, both rural and urban, are united into a large community, the county. Map I shows the school districts and the townships which comprise the county. The city of Madison occupies the center, and small towns and villages are scattered here and there. The country school is the chief center of interest in each school district. Here and there through the county are high schools. Each of these is a center of a larger irregular area, including a number of school districts and parts of several townships as shown in map 2. Map 3 shows TRADE AREAS. Trade and education are two of the chief interests that bind people into communities. But where these interests exist, there are likely to be other interests; the high school is likely to be a meeting place for social and recreational purposes.

The area and boundaries of a "farming" or "rural neighborhood" community are usually rather indefinite and changeable, depending upon surface features and upon transportation conditions, or the length of the "day's haul." With improved roads and better means of transportation, larger areas and more people are included. A "neighborhood" or "trade area" with automobiles is much larger than one where horses or ox carts are used exclusively. The consolidated school with transportation provided for pupils expands the rural neighborhood community.

COMMON INTERESTS OF THE LARGER COMMUNITY

Each of the small dots on map 3 represents a farm home. If we select one of these dots and imagine ourselves members of the family that lives there, we shall see that we are members of a certain school district, of a certain township, of a community that has grown up around a trade center and a high school, and of course of the county as a whole. No matter in what school district we live, we have an interest in some matters in common with the people of all other school districts in the county. For example, there is a state university at Madison, and connected with it is a training school for teachers. The work done here influences the teaching in all the schools of the county, and indeed of the whole state. There is also an agricultural college at the state university which serves the farmers throughout the entire county and state. If we look closely at map 3, we shall see how highways and railroads center at Madison, which is the county seat of Dane County and the capital of the state of Wisconsin.

Just as the many small communities that make up a county are dependent upon one another, requiring organized cooperation for the county welfare, so all the counties of a state, and all the people who live in all the counties, are interdependent in many ways. The people of the city of Madison, for example, depend for their food supply upon the farmers not only of Dane County but of the entire state. The university at Madison serves not Dane County alone, but the people of all the counties of the state. The public schools of the state should be equally good in all counties and managed by a uniform plan. Roads and other means of transportation are a matter of concern to the entire state. And so the state is a community, organized with a government, to secure cooperation among all the people and all the smaller communities that compose it. In fact, a large part of the business of the governments of the local communities, such as city and county and township, is to administer the laws of the central state government.

In a similar manner, the forty-eight states of the Union, with all the counties and smaller communities of which they consist, comprise our great national community, of which we are all members.

COMMUNITIES IN THE LARGER COMMUNITIES

When we speak of "our community" we are likely to think at once of the small community immediately around us—our neighborhood, village, or city. Our citizenship in these local communities is extremely important, and will demand no small part of our attention. But it is equally important to be fully alive to our citizenship in the larger communities. This is true wherever we live; but there is a sense in which our national community is peculiarly important to those of us who live in rural communities. The wants of people in cities are, as a rule, looked after more completely by their local governments than is the case in rural communities.

The people of rural communities, and especially farmers themselves, are directly served by the national government in a great variety of ways. In the next chapter we shall consider our nation as a community.

Show how the different classes of your school are bound together by interests common to the entire school. Compare this union of classes with the union of states into a nation. What constitutes the government of your school?

Mention some things in which all the people of your county have a special interest. Are these things of equal interest to farmers and townspeople?

Do the farmers and townspeople of your county work well together, or are there conflicts between them? If there are conflicts, what are the causes?

Point out some ways in which the prosperity and welfare of the farmers of your locality depend upon a neighboring city or town. Also some ways in which, the city or town depend upon the neighboring farmers.

If there is organized cooperation in your county, similar to that described on page 32, has it been brought about or encouraged by government, or solely by voluntary effort on the part of citizens? If the government had anything to do with it, was it the county government, state government, or national government?

Has farmland increased or decreased in value in your locality since your father was a boy? Can you show a relation between this change in value of farmland and the growth of nearby towns or cities?

What industries in your town (or a neighboring town) are dependent upon farming for their raw materials? for the sale of their product?

What is the cotton gin? the spinning jenny? Show how these inventions were a benefit to agriculture. How did they promote the growth of cities?

Make a map of your school district. Do the people of this district cooperate in matters other than those pertaining to the school?

On a map of your county, show approximately the "trade area" served by the "trade center" nearest you. For what other purposes besides trade do the farmers of this trade area come to the trade center?

On a map of your county, show the area from which pupils come to the high school nearest you.

On a map of your state, show the principle "railroad centers." Show how these are the centers of larger trade areas corresponding to the small trade areas of your county. Show how the farmers and the residents of these railroad centers have common interests.

READINGS

Dunn, Arthur W., The Community and the Citizen, Chapters, i-iii.

Galpin, C. J., "The Social Anatomy of an Agricultural Community," Research Bulletin 34, Agricultural Experiment Station, University of Wisconsin, Madison, Wis.

Gillette, John M., Constructive Rural Sociology (Sturgis & Walton Co., New York), Chapter iv ("Types of Communities").

Small and Vincent, An Introduction to the Study of Society (American Book Co.), Book II, Chapters i-iv.



CHAPTER VII

OUR NATIONAL COMMUNITY

IMPERFECTIONS OF OUR NATIONAL COMMUNITY

It is important to get in the habit of thinking of our nation as a community, just as we think of our school or town or rural neighborhood as one. This is not always easy to do because of its huge size and complicated character. It would be wrong, too, to get the idea that it is a perfect community—none of our communities is perfect. Conflicts of interest are often more apparent than community of interest. Teamwork among the different parts and groups that make up our nation is often very poor. Although our government is a wonderfully good one, it is still only an imperfect means of cooperation. Our nation is far from being a complete democracy, for there are many people in it who do not have the full enjoyment of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness; and large numbers of our "self-governing" people really have little or no part in government.

LOYALTY TO IDEALS

It need not give us an unpatriotic feeling to acknowledge the imperfections of our nation or of our government; for communities GROW, not only in size, but also in ability to perform their proper work, just as individuals do. We call a person conceited who thinks that he is perfect, especially if he boasts of it. But his conceit is itself an imperfection and a hindrance to growth. So the patriotic citizen is not one who is unable to see defects in his community, or who refuses to acknowledge them, but one who has high CIVIC IDEALS and is loyal to them, who understands in what respects these ideals have not been reached, and who, as a member of the community, contributes everything he can to keep it growing in THE RIGHT DIRECTION.

"The problem of government is, after all, the problem of human growth. ... The one constant and inconstant quantity with which man must deal is man—changing, inert, impulsive, limited, sympathetic, selfish, aspiring man. His institutions, whether social or political, must come out of his wants and out of his capacities. Luther Burbank has not yet made grapes to grow on thorns or figs on thistles. Neither has any system of government made all men wise..."—FRANKLIN K. LANE.

Is it possible for a community to be 100 percent perfect? Why?

What people in your community take no part in government?

May people who cannot vote have any influence upon government? Explain.

Has a good citizen a right to criticize his government? What is the difference between helpful and harmful criticism?

What is an "ideal"? a "civic ideal"?

WELDING OF THE NATION BY WAR

It is easier now than usual to think of our nation as a community, because the war with Germany served to arouse our "national spirit," and showed very clearly the importance in our national life of those elements which characterize all community life— common purpose, interdependence, and organized, cooperation (see Chapters I-III). The creation of a National Army did much to bring this about.

When the benefits which come to the nation through the creation of the National Army are catalogued, the fact that it has welded the country into a homogeneous society, [Footnote: "Homogeneous society"—a society or community all of whose parts and members have like purposes and interests.] seeking the same national ends and animated by the same national ideals, will overtop all other advantages. The organization of the selected Army fuses the thousand separate elements making up the United States into one steel-hard mass. Men of the North, South, East, and West meet and mingle, and on the anvil of war become citizens worthy of the liberty won by the first American armies. [Footnote: Major Granville R. Fortesque, in National Geographic Magazine, Dec., 1917]. How this welding of the parts of the nation together was brought about by the war is suggested by the words of an old Confederate soldier who wrote to a friend in the North:

"During the war between the states I was a rebel, and continued one in heart until this great war. But now I am a devoted follower of Uncle Sam and endorse him in every respect."

DIVERSE ELEMENTS IN OUR NATION

The fact that our nation contained in its population large numbers of people from practically every country of Europe caused no little anxiety when we entered the European war. Our population embraces a hundred different races and nationalities. Of these, ten million are negroes and three hundred thirty-six thousand are Indians. Thirty-three million are of foreign parentage, and of these, thirteen million are foreign-born. Five million do not speak English, and there are one thousand five hundred news papers in the United States printed in foreign languages. Five and one- half million above the age of ten years, including both foreign and native, cannot read or write in any language. New York City has a larger Hebrew population than any other city in the world, contains more Italians than Rome, and its German population is the fourth largest among the cities of the world. Pittsburgh has more Serbs than the capital of Serbia. It is said that there were more Greeks subject to draft in the American army than there were in the entire army of Greece. Would all these people be loyal to our nation, or would they divide it against itself?

LOYALTY OF DIVERSE ELEMENTS

The war, in fact, showed us that there were some among us who had never really become "members" of our nation and who were dangerous to our peace and safety. It also showed us the danger that comes from the presence of so many illiterates, or of those who cannot use the English language; for such people, even though loyal in spirit to the United States, cannot understand instructions either in the army or in industry, and otherwise prevent effective cooperation. And yet the most striking thing that the war showed us in regard to this mixed population is that the great mass of it, regardless of color or place of birth, is really American in spirit and loyal to our flag and the ideas which it represents.

NATIONAL SAFETY DEPENDS ON HARMONY

Another weakness within our nation that the war emphasized is the lack of harmony between wage earners and their employers. There were many sharp conflicts between them. Strikes occurred, or were threatened, in factories, shipyards, mines, and railroads, that blocked the wheels of industry at a time when the nation needed to strain every nerve to provide the materials of war. This lack of harmony between workmen and employers, which in war threatened our national safety, has existed for many years and has always been an obstacle to national progress. But the common purpose of winning the war caused employers and wage earners, in most cases, to adjust their differences. In nearly every case, one side or the other, or both sides, yielded certain points and agreed not to dispute over others, at least for the period of the war. The national government did much to bring this about by the creation of labor adjustment boards to hear complaints from either side and to settle disputes. If our national community life is to develop in a wholesome way, complete cooperation between workmen and employers must be secured and made permanent on the basis of interests that are common to both.

THE EFFECT OF A COMMON PURPOSE

Such facts as these show how easy it is, in a huge, complex community like our nation, for conflicts to arise among different sections and groups of the population; and how difficult it is always to see the common interests that exist. But they also show how such conflicts tend to disappear when a situation arises which forces us to think of the common interests instead of the differences. All else was forgotten in the common purpose to "win the war." No sacrifice was too great on the part of any individual in order that this national purpose might be served. Everywhere throughout the country, in cities and in remote rural districts, service flags in the windows testified that the homes of the land were offering members that the nation and its ideals might live. Men, women, and even children contributed their work and their savings and denied themselves customary comforts to help win the war. THE ENTIRE NATION WAS WORKING TOGETHER FOR A COMMON PURPOSE.

OUR NATIONAL PURPOSE

We have said that this common purpose was to "win the war." But there were purposes that lie much deeper than this, without which it would not have been worth while to enter the war at all. As we saw in Chapter I, our nation is founded on a belief in the right of every one to life and physical well-being; to be secure in one's rightful possessions; to freedom of thought—education, free speech, a free press; to freedom of religion; to happiness in pleasant surroundings and a wholesome social life; and, above all, to a voice in the government which exists to protect these rights. It was to secure a larger freedom to enjoy these rights, "for ourselves first and for all others in their time," that our nation was solidly united against the enemy that threatened it from without. But it was with this same purpose that the War of Independence was fought, that our Constitution was adopted, that slavery was abolished, that millions of people from foreign lands have come to our shores. It is this common purpose that makes the great mass of foreigners in our country Americans, ready to fight for America, if necessary even against the land of their birth. It is this for which the American flag stands at all times, whether in peace or in war.

What proof can you give of a "national spirit" in your locality during the war?

What evidence can you give to show that this national spirit is or is not as strong since the war closed?

What was the "National Army"? the "National Guard"? Which of these organizations was most likely to develop a "national spirit"? Why? What good reasons can you give for the action of the government in consolidating the Regular Army, the National Army, and the National Guard into a "United States Army"?

What arguments can you give in favor of requiring all instruction in the public schools to be given in the English language?

What arguments can you give in favor of teaching lessons in citizenship in foreign-language newspapers?

What foreign nationalities are represented in your locality?

Make a blackboard table showing the nationality of the parents and grandparents of each member of your class.

Give illustrations to show that "winning the war" was the controlling purpose in your community during the war.

In what way has the war made YOU think about the right-to-life and the need for physical well-being? about security in property? about freedom of thought? about the desirability of an education? about the right of people to pleasant surroundings? about self- government?

Show how the Spanish-American war was fought for the same purpose as that mentioned in the paragraph above.

Write a brief theme on "What the Flag Means to Me."

NATIONAL INTERDEPENDENCE

The attempt to work together in the war made it very apparent how dependent the nation is upon all its parts, and how dependent each part is upon all the others. It was often said that "the farmers would win the war." At other times it was said to be ships, or fuel, or airplanes, or railroad transportation, or trained scientists and technical workers. The truth is, of course, that all these things and many more were absolutely necessary, and that no one of them would have been of much value without all the others.

It is true that the winning of the war depended upon the farmers, because they are the producers of the food and of the raw materials for textiles without which the nation and every group and person in it would have been helpless. But the farmer could not supply food to the nation without machinery for its production, and without city markets and railroads and ships for its distribution. Machinery could not be made, nor ships and locomotives built, without steel. For the manufacture of steel there must be iron and fuel and tungsten and other materials. And for all these things there must be inventors and skilled mechanics, and to produce these there must be schools. And so we could go on indefinitely to show how the war made us feel our interdependence. What we need to understand, however, is that THIS INTERDEPENDENCE IS CHARACTERISTIC OF OUR NATIONAL LIFE AT ALL TIMES; the war only made us feel it more keenly.

NATION-BUILDING IN WAR TIME

During the war, strange as it may seem, while we were devoting our national energies to the work of destruction incident to war, we as a nation made astonishing progress in many ways other than in the art of war—in what we might call nation-building.

In some ways we made progress in a year or two that under ordinary circumstances might have required a generation. A striking illustration of this is in the development of a great fleet of merchant ships at a rate that would have been impossible before the war. Beginning with almost nothing when the war began, we had, in less than two years, a merchant fleet larger than that of any other nation, and that in spite of the constant destruction of ships by the enemy. The chairman of the shipping board of the United States government says that this is because the necessities of the war made the whole nation see how much it depends upon ships, and caused not only ship-builders, but also engineers and manufacturers and businessmen and the Navy department of the government, and many others, to concentrate upon this problem, with the result that we discovered methods of shipbuilding, and of loading and unloading and operating ships when they were built, that will probably enable us to maintain permanently a merchant marine, the lack of which we have deplored for many years.

In a similar way we discovered and brought into use valuable natural resources of whose existence we had largely been ignorant and for which we had been dependent upon other nations. We made astonishing progress in scientific knowledge, and especially in the application of this knowledge to invention and to industrial enterprises. We developed a new interest in agriculture, and learned the food values of many products that had formerly been neglected. We were led to attack seriously the great problem of suitable housing for workmen, and had an important lesson in the relation between wholesome home-life and industrial efficiency (see Chapter X, pp. 112-113). Foundations were laid for the adjustment of the unfortunate differences that have long existed between workmen and their employers. The war suggested changes in our educational methods, some of which will doubtless become effective, to the great improvement of our public schools, colleges, and technical schools.

We shall study some of these things more fully in later chapters. They are mentioned now to illustrate how OUR NATIONAL PROGRESS WAS STIMULATED WHEN THE WAR FORCED US TO SEE THE RELATION OF ALL THESE THINGS TO ONE ANOTHER AND TO THE ACCOMPLISHMENT OF OUR NATIONAL PURPOSE. On the other hand, failure to recognize this national interdependence means slow progress as a national community. When the war began, our nation was said to be "unprepared." Insofar as this was true—and it was true in many particulars—it was because in the times of peace before the war we had not thought enough about the dependence of our national strength and safety upon all these factors in our national life WORKING TOGETHER. And so, in the times of peace AFTER THE WAR, if the purposes for which our nation fought are to be fulfilled, we must continue to profit by this lesson which the war has taught us.

Recall your discussion of national interdependence in connection with your study of Chapter II.

Report on some of the important scientific and commercial developments resulting from the war; as, for example:

The development of the commercial use of the airplane.

The development of new food supplies.

The production of fertilizer from the nitrogen of the air.

The development of new industries in the United States.

Changes in methods of farming.

What are some changes in education that are likely to result from the war?

Show how the strike of coal miners in 1919 affected the life of the nation.

THE "SUPREME TEST" OF THE NATION

The "working together" of all these interdependent parts is the important thing. "The supreme test of the nation has come," said President Wilson. "We must all speak, act, and serve together." [Footnote: Message to the American People, April 15, 1919].

1

It is not an army that we must shape and train for war ... it is a Nation. To this end our people must draw close in one compact front against a common foe. But this cannot be if each man pursues a private purpose. The Nation needs all men, but it needs each man, not in the field that will most pleasure him, but in the endeavor that will best serve the common good. ... The whole Nation must be a team, in which each man must play the part for which he is best fitted. [Footnote: Conscription Proclamation, May 18, 1917.]

THE NATION AS A TEAM

We had some suggestion on page 72 of how such national team work became a fact. "Do your bit!" was the watch-word. It was splendid to see how personal interests gave way before the desire to serve the nation. It is a thrilling story how the racial elements in our population forgot their differences of race and language and remembered only that they were American; how employers and employees laid aside their differences; how farmers and businessmen, manufacturers and mechanics, miners and woodsmen, inventors and teachers, women in the home and children in the schools, doctors and nurses, and every other class and group subordinated their personal interests to the one national purpose of winning the war in order that "the world might become a decent place in which to live."

As soon as the United States entered the war, Washington, the nation's capital, became filled with people from all parts of the country who wanted to help in some way. Some were called there by the government; others came to volunteer their services and to offer ideas that they thought useful. Many came as representatives of organizations—business and industrial organizations, scientific associations, civic societies. New committees and associations were formed, until the number of voluntary citizen organizations eager to do "war work" became almost too numerous to remember. They were all an indication of the desire of the people to do their part in the national enterprise.

CONFUSION WITHOUT ORGANIZATION

But there followed a period of confusion. All these organizations and the people whom they represented wanted to help, but they did not always know just what to do nor how to do it. Each organization had its own ideas which it often magnified above all others. Different organizations wanted to accomplish the same purpose, but wanted to do it in different ways. Often they duplicated one another's efforts. A war could not be won under such conditions. But out of all this confusion there finally developed order, and this was because the various organizations of people realized that if they were to accomplish anything they must work in cooperation with the national government, whose business it was, after all, to organize the nation for united action. In fact, it was for this reason that they came to Washington. Many of them sought to influence the government to adopt this or that plan, and sometimes succeeded; but it was the government that finally decided what plans were to be adopted, and all of the effort of the numerous organizations and of individuals must be brought into harmony with these.

NATIONAL TEAM WORK THROUGH GOVERNMENT

The period of the war afforded many striking examples of national cooperation secured by the government. It may have seemed sometimes that our government interfered with personal freedom to an unreasonable extent, as when it limited the amount of coal we could buy, fixed the prices of many articles, determined the wages that should be paid for labor, took over the management of the railroads and of the telegraph and telephone lines, and did many other things that it never had done in times of peace. We expected government to exercise powers in war time that it would not be permitted to exercise in times of peace. But it can be shown that even during the war, the government, with all its unusual powers, did not "ride roughshod" over the people, but sought to "make them partners in an enterprise which after all was their own." The nation was fighting for its life and for the very principles upon which it was founded, and it was necessary that cooperation should be complete and effective. This was what the government sought, and it exercised its powers by inviting and obtaining national cooperation to a remarkable extent.

THE SELECTIVE DRAFT AS AN ILLUSTRATION OF TEAM WORK

Our national army was created by a "selective" draft, or conscription. Conscription had formerly been looked upon with disfavor as a form of forced military service. A volunteer army was thought to be more in harmony with a democratic form of government. But the draft is now seen to be far more democratic than a volunteer army because it treats all able-bodied men alike, instead of leaving the fighting to those who are most courageous and most patriotic, while those who are inclined to shirk may easily do so. Moreover, the SELECTIVE draft means the selection of men to serve in the capacity for which they are best fitted. In Great Britain, under a volunteer system, and in France, under a system of compulsory military service for all men, thousands of brave men went to the trenches in the early days of the war who, because of their training, should have been kept at home to perform the vast amount of skilled labor and scientific work which this war demanded. War industry, without which there could be no fighting, was thus greatly hampered.

By our selective draft, on the other hand, while every man was expected to do his share, each was selected as far as possible to do the thing which he could do best and therefore which would best serve the country. It also sought to prevent those who had families dependent upon them from going to war until they were absolutely needed. Thus the selective draft is an example of government organizing our national manpower for more effective teamwork and with less hardship than if it had been left to voluntary action.

TEAM WORK THROUGH THE FOOD ADMINISTRATION

The United States Food Administration was created by the President to carry out the provisions of a law passed by Congress", to provide further for the national security and defense by encouraging the production, conserving the supply, and controlling the distribution of food products and fuel." The President placed at its head a man in whom the people of the country had great confidence, because of his experience and success in organizing and managing the Belgian relief work, Mr. Herbert Hoover. He gathered around him men familiar with the problems relating to the food supply of the nation, and then proceeded to enlighten the country in regard to the nature of these problems and to seek for the cooperation of the people in solving them.

As soon as he was appointed, the food administrator issued a statement containing the following facts:

Whereas we exported before the war but 80,000,000 bushels of wheat per annum, this year we must find for all our allies 225,000,000 bushels, and this in the face of a short crop. ... France and Italy formerly produced their own sugar, while England and Ireland imported largely from Germany. Owing to the inability of the first-named to produce more than one third of their needs, and the necessity for the others to import from other markets, they must all come to the West Indies for their very large supplies, and therefore deplete our resources.

If we can reduce our consumption of wheat flour by 1 pound, our meat by 7 ounces, our sugar by 7 ounces, our fat by 7 ounces PER PERSON PER WEEK, these quantities, multiplied by 100,000,000 (the population of the United States) will immeasurably aid and encourage our allies, help our own growing armies, and so effectively serve the great and noble cause of humanity in which our nation has embarked.

DEMOCRACY A PARTNERSHIP

This illustrates how the Food Administration sought cooperation. It "made partners" of the people, explained to them the situation, and asked them to help as individuals. It showed the nation what it must do if it were to be successful in its undertaking. It is true that the President had large powers to enforce observance of the rules outlined by the Food Administration, but it was only in the exceptional case of the individual consumer and producer who refused to cooperate for the common good that it became necessary to use the power. The method of democracy is to point out clearly how the desired result may be obtained and to depend upon the people to govern themselves accordingly.

After a year of the war a member of the Food Administration is quoted as saying, [Footnote: In an article on "Your Wheatless Days," by W. A. Wolff, in Collier's Weekly, Aug. 17, 1918.] "There's never been anything like it in history. ... We asked the American people to do voluntarily more than any other people has ever been asked to do under compulsion. And the American people made good!"

What was true in the unusual time of war is true to even a greater extent in the ordinary time of peace. We have little to fear from our national government as long as we and those to whom we entrust its management, always keep in mind its real purpose, which is to show us how to work together effectively as a nation and to help us do it.

EVERY MAN COUNTS

All through this study we are going to observe how in the ordinary affairs of life our national government serves us in this respect. One thing that we need especially to learn is that we have a great national purpose ALL THE TIME, in peace as well as in war. In fact, PEACE IS A PART OF THAT PURPOSE. We went to war because without it there could be no assurance of a lasting peace. While we fought to defend our national purpose and our national ideals against a powerful foe from without, this purpose and these ideals cannot be fully achieved by the war alone. They can be finally achieved only by ourselves as we develop, day by day, our national community life. To do this we must always keep in mind our great national purpose, we must realize our dependence upon one another in achieving this purpose, and we must make our national team work as perfect as it can be made. Above all, we must realize that, in peace as in war, EVERY MAN COUNTS in our national community life. As President Wilson said:

"THE NATION NEEDS ALL MEN, BUT IT NEEDS EACH MAN. ..." "THE WHOLE NATION MUST BE A TEAM, IN WHICH EACH MAN SHALL PLAY THE PART FOR WHICH HE IS BEST FITTED."

Read and discuss President Wilson's "Message to the American People," of April 15, 1917.

What organizations existed in your community to secure teamwork for war purposes?

Show how boys' and girls' clubs, or the School Garden Army, made cooperation possible on a national scale. Is this true in peace times as well as in war time?

Is there greater or less need of national teamwork today than during the war? Explain your answer.

What evidences are there that the teamwork of our nation has not been as good since the war as during the war? Why is this?

Show how universal military training might increase the national spirit What arguments can you give against it?

Should or should not the food administration of wartime be continued in peace time? Why?

What does it mean to you to be an American?

READINGS

In Long's American Patriotic Prose:

Van Dyke, "The Blending of Races," p. 4.

De Crevecoeur, "The American," p. 38.

Webster, "Imaginary Speech of John Adams," p. 77.

Brooks, "The Fourth of July in Westminster Abbey," p. 89.

Van Dyke, "The Americanism of Washington," pp. 135-137.

Jay, "Unity as a Protection against Foreign Force and Influence," p. 139.

Webster, "Liberty and Union Inseparable," p. 158.

Lincoln, "Gettysburg Speech," p. 181.

Lincoln, "Second Inaugural Address," p. 183.

Whitman, "Two Brothers, One North, One South," p. 201.

Wilson, "Spirit of America," p. 266.

Roosevelt, "True Americanism," p. 270.

Wilson, "Conscription Proclamation," p. 283.

Hughes, "What the Flag Means," p. 288.

Eliot, "Five American Contributions to Civilization," p. 310.

Lane, "Makers of the Flag," p. 314.

McCall, "America the Melting Pot," p. 320.

Wilson, "To Newly-Made Citizens," p. 322.

Gibbons, "The Republic Will Endure," p. 340.

Eliot, "What Americans Believe In," p. 361.

Abbott, "Patriotism," p. 362.

In Foerster and Pierson's American Ideals:

Wilson, "Conscription Proclamation," p. 175.

Wilson, "Americanism and the Foreign-Born," p. 178.

Alderman, "Can Democracy be Organized?" p. 158.



CHAPTER VIII

A WORLD COMMUNITY

Is there a world community? A world torn by war, as our world was from 1914 to 1918, may not seem to give much evidence of it, and many would at once answer "No" to our question. And yet such phrases as the "brotherhood of man" and the "cause of humanity" are familiar to us all. We may briefly discuss the question in this study, because if there is such a community, we are all members of it, and our membership in it affects our lives as individuals and as a nation.

WHAT THE WAR DISCLOSED WITH REGARD TO A WORLD COMMUNITY

The world community is certainly very imperfectly developed, but while the war emphasized its imperfections, it also furnished evidence if its reality. Its existence depends upon the presence of recognized common purposes and of organized teamwork in accomplishing these purposes, as in the case of any community. The war disclosed conflicting interests among the nations; but it united for a common purpose a larger part of the world's population than had ever before acted together in a common cause. It disclosed an interdependence among the nations and the peoples of the world that we had not thought of. And while it disclosed the weakness of the world's organization for teamwork, it aroused us to the possibilities of such organization, made us long for it, and brought us, as many believe, a step nearer to its accomplishment.

AMERICA'S DETACHMENT FROM THE WORLD

Separated by wide oceans, from the rest of the world, our nation grew and prospered with a sense of security from the conflicts that from time to time disturbed the Old World. We early adopted a policy of avoiding entanglements that might draw us into these conflicts. In his Farewell Address, Washington said:

The great rule of conduct for us in regard to foreign nations is, in extending our commercial relations, to have with them as little political connection as possible. ... Why, by interweaving our destiny with that of any part of Europe, entangle our peace and posterity in the toils of European ambition, rivalship, interest, humor, or caprice? It is our true policy to steer clear of permanent alliances with any portion of the foreign world.

A few years later, President Monroe issued his famous statement, known as the Monroe Doctrine, which, recognizing the principle that Washington had stated, also denied the right of European powers to interfere with the free growth of the republican nations of North and South America. The United States has steadfastly held to this doctrine from that day to this.

NATIONS HAVE BECOME CLOSE NEIGHBORS

But great changes have come to the world since the time of Washington. The use of steam in navigation, the submarine cable and wireless telegraphy have brought all the world into closer relations than existed between New England and the Southern States in the early days of our national life. Our government at Washington may send messages to European capitals and receive a reply within ten minutes. The Atlantic has been crossed by airplane. The nations of the world have become very close neighbors. The murder of a prince in a little city of central Europe drew from millions of homes in America their sons to fight on the soil of Europe. We entered the war because our interests were so closely bound up with those of the world that we could not keep out; because "what affects mankind is inevitably our affair, as well as the affair of the nations of Europe and Asia."

The war did not create this interdependence; it only emphasized it. But now that we are aware of it, it will probably influence our lives to a much greater extent than before the war.

WHAT THE WORLD WAS FIGHTING FOR

The nations that were associated against Germany, occupy, with their dependencies, two-thirds of the earth's surface and include more than four-fifths of its population. The governments of these nations declared that they were fighting primarily, not for selfish interests such as "ports and provinces and trade," but "for the common interests of the whole family of civilized nations—for nothing less than the cause of mankind." [Footnote: Stuart P. Sherman, American and Allied Ideals, p. 14.] Even if some of the governments were influenced to a greater or lesser extent by selfish motives, they still recognized a common interest of the peoples of the world, a "cause of mankind," and based their appeals upon it. The prime minister of England said, "We must not allow any sense of revenge, any spirit of greed, any grasping desire, to overcome the fundamental principles of righteousness." Faraway Siam declared that she entered the war "to uphold the sanctity of international rights against nations showing a contempt for humanity." And little Guatemala proclaimed that she had "from the first adhered to and supported the attitude of the United States in defense of the rights of nations, of liberty of the seas, and of international justice." Our President said that "what we demand in this war is nothing peculiar to ourselves. It is that the world be made fit and safe to live in for every peace- loving nation. ... All the peoples of the world are in effect partners in this interest."

The avowed purpose for which the United States entered the war, and for which "all the peoples of the world are in effect partners," is the same as that for which the American Revolutionary War was fought, which was proclaimed in our Declaration of Independence, and for which America has always stood—the equal right of all men to "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness," and to self-government. Nearly the whole world was united against a few autocratic governments that denied these rights.

AMERICA HAS FOUGHT FOR THE FREEDOM OF OTHERS

At the time of the American Revolution the colonists had no desire to fight the English PEOPLE, but revolted against the autocratic English GOVERNMENT of that time, which refused to recognize the rights of the people. The English people had many times fought for these rights, and many of them sympathized with the American colonists, The winning of American independence was a victory for free government in England as well as in America, and the government of England today is as democratic as our own. This understanding about the American Revolution throws light upon what the President of the United States meant when he said that we fought Germany for "the ultimate peace of the world and for the liberation of its peoples, THE GERMAN PEOPLES INCLUDED." Another writer said, "We are not fighting to put the Germans out but to get them in."

THE GROWTH OF HUMAN SYMPATHY

It has taken a long time for the peoples of the world to develop a sense of their common wants and purposes. Differences in language, in race and color, in religious beliefs and observances, in forms of government, even in such matters as dress and other habits and customs, have tended to obscure the common feelings of all. This lack of sympathetic understanding is suggested by Shylock, in Shakespeare's Merchant of Venice:

Hath not a Jew eyes? hath not a Jew hands, organs, dimensions, senses, affections, passions? fed with the same food, hurt with the same weapons, subject to the same diseases, healed by the same means, warmed and cooled by the same Winter and Summer, as a Christian is? If you prick us, do we not bleed? if you tickle us, do we not laugh? if you poison us, do we not die? and if you wrong us, shall we not revenge? if we are like you in the rest, we will resemble you in that.

Increased opportunity for travel, better means of communication, and more widespread education have greatly increased the understanding among peoples and nations, and have disclosed to view common purposes and ideals in spite of differences. The fact that large numbers of people from every part of the globe have come to the United States to live together as one nation has contributed to the same result.

Give illustrations from your own experience and reading to show that differences in dress, language, race, and customs make sympathetic understanding difficult.

What is meant by "America, the melting-pot"?

INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION

As the peoples of the world have become better acquainted, individuals and groups have tended to associate themselves together, regardless of national boundaries, for the promotion of common interests.

One example of this is the common movement of organized labor which has overstepped national boundaries.

There is an International Institute of Agriculture, with headquarters at Rome, and representing 56 countries, the purpose of which is to promote better economic and social conditions among agricultural populations of the world. Some of its publications are published in five languages.

Literature and art bind all the world together, and science knows no national boundary lines. Christianity is one of the greatest influences for a "brotherhood of man." Differences in religious belief have presented most difficult barriers to overcome, but there has been a steadily increasing tolerance of one religious faith toward others.

These are only a few of hundreds of illustrations that might be given.

SERVICE OF THE RED CROSS

We have all become familiar, during the war, with the work of the Red Cross. No other organization has done more to extend the feeling of common brotherhood in the world and the spirit of world service. During the war a Junior Department of the Red Cross was organized, enrolling in its membership about twelve million American boys and girls and organizing them for practical service to war-stricken Europe and Asia. Since the war, the Junior Red Cross, whose headquarters are at Washington, D. C., has undertaken to use its organization to promote correspondence among boys and girls of different lands, and an exchange of handiwork, pictures, and other things illustrative of their interests. The American School Citizenship League (405 Marlboro Street, Boston) is encouraging the same idea, and there is a Bureau of French- American Education Correspondence for a similar purpose, with headquarters at the George Peabody College for Teachers, Nashville, Tenn.

THE MOVEMENT FOR WORLD PEACE

Numerous INTERNATIONAL PEACE CONGRESSES have been held, the first one as early as 1843, and in the United States and other countries organizations exist for the promotion of friendly relations among the nations, and especially for the substitution of arbitration for war as a means of settling international disputes.

Among such organizations in the United States are the League to Enforce Peace, the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, the American Peace and Arbitration League, the American Peace Society, the World Peace Federation, the Church Peace Union.

What may be gained by correspondence between the young people of different lands?

Report on the following (see references):

The work of the Pan-American Union.

The work of the Red Cross in war and peace.

PAN-AMERICAN UNION

One of the most successful experiments in international cooperation is that of the North and South American republics. The first Pan-American Conference, attended by delegates from the twenty-one American republics, was held in Washington, D.C., in 1889. As a result of this Conference the Pan-American Union was established, with permanent headquarters in Washington. Its purpose is "the development of commerce, friendly intercourse, and good understanding among these countries."

INTERNATIONAL GOVERNMENT

To secure anything like effective teamwork among the nations for the common interest and to substitute arbitration for war as a means of settling differences, there must be some kind of international organization, and rules to which the governments of the nations will agree. Civilized nations have always had their official means of dealing with one another through their governments, such as the diplomatic and consular services. Alliances have, from time immemorial, been made between nations, treaties have been solemnly agreed to, and a body of international law has gradually grown up. But treaties and international law have frequently been violated, and no international government has existed with sufficient authority or power to force nations to observe the law or to keep their agreements. As a result of two peace conferences held at The Hague in Holland, in 1899 and 1907, an international Court of Arbitration was established at The Hague (The Hague Tribunal), before which disputes might be brought by nations if they desired to do so. But there was no way by which a nation could be compelled to appeal to the court.

NATIONALITY AND SOVEREIGNTY

Nations have a strong sense of their NATIONALITY, and are extremely jealous of their SOVEREIGNTY, which is the supreme power claimed by every nation to form its own government and to manage its own affairs without interference by other nations. It is this that has prevented the development of anything like a real international government that could control the conduct of national governments, or that could require a nation to submit its grievances to any judge other than itself. This has perhaps been the chief weakness of the world community.

A LEAGUE OF NATIONS

Many people have long believed that the self-governing nations of the world must sooner or later unite, in the interest of world peace, in some kind of federation or league, with a central organization to which all would agree to submit their differences. The war made it seem even more necessary. Accordingly, the Peace Conference at Versailles at the close of the war included in the treaty of peace a Covenant (or constitution) for a League of Nations. The treaty, including the Covenant, has been ratified (March, 1920) by four of the five great nations associated against Germany (France, England, Italy, and Japan; the United States being the exception), besides several other nations. While the President of the United States strongly advocated the treaty with the Covenant, the Senate did not approve of its ratification. Those in our country who opposed the Covenant did so for a variety of reasons, but chief among them were: first, the fear that the Covenant would cause us to depart from the principles laid down by Washington and Monroe; and, second, the fear that the powers conferred upon the international government would deprive our national government of some of its sovereign powers. The friends of the Covenant denied that either of these things would be true.

Whether or not the United States should enter the League [Footnote: The Council of the new League of Nations held its first meeting January 16, 1920, the United States, of course, not being represented.] we shall have to leave for the statesmen to decide; and whether or not the League will accomplish the desired ends, time alone can prove. But two or three things may safely be said with regard to any really effective world government.

MIGHT DOES NOT MAKE RIGHT

When people live together in communities, each person has to sacrifice something of his personal freedom in order that all may enjoy the largest possible liberty. The same is true of families in a neighborhood, of communities in a state, of the states in our nation. There is no reason why it should not be true of nations which are neighbors to one another. No nation has any more right to do as it pleases than a person or a family has, IF WHAT IT PLEASES TO DO IS UNJUST TO ITS NEIGHBORS. The only thing, however, that a nation can properly be asked to give up IS BEING UNJUST TO ITS NEIGHBORS. We saw in Chapter IV that government and law increase rather than decrease the individual citizen's freedom, and that it is only the "ill-mannered" who feel the restrictions of a wise government. So, when we finally get a world government that is good, it will be one that will increase the freedom of all "good-mannered" nations, restricting only those that are "ill- mannered."

WHAT "AMERICA FIRST" MEANS

Moreover, when we finally get a league of nations that will really secure friendly cooperation among the nations for their common interests, it will be brought about, not by sacrificing nationality and national patriotism, but by STRENGTHENING them.

What is required is not less loyalty to one's nationality, but more sympathetic understanding of nationalities and national ideals different from one's own, combined with a recognition of the fundamental interests ... which unite them to each other. [Footnote: "Thoughts on Nationalism and Internationalism," in History Teachers' Magazine, June 1918, p. 334.]

The only way to be sure of a perfect neighborhood is first to see to it that the homes of the neighborhood are strong and whole some. No person can really be loyal to his neighborhood who is not first of all loyal to his home. Thoroughly efficient townships and counties and cities are essential to a thoroughly efficient state; and no citizen is loyal to his state who is not loyal to his township, county, and city. The strength of our nation depends upon the strength of the states that compose it, and real national patriotism cannot well exist in the heart of a citizen who is disloyal to his state. The first essential step toward an effective WORLD government is to see that our national government is efficient and at the same time JUST. The first and best service that a citizen can perform for the world community is to be loyal to AMERICAN IDEALS, which are becoming the ideals of an ever- increasing part of the world's population.

THE NEW TYPE OF PATRIOT NO LONGER CRIES, "MY COUNTRY AGAINST THE WORLD," BUT "MY COUNTRY FOR THE WORLD." [Footnote: Stuart P. Sherman, American and Allied Ideals, p. 14.]

Topics for investigation:

The Hague Tribunal. Disputes that have been settled by it. Why the dispute that led to the recent war was not settled by it.

The meaning of "nationality." Of "sovereignty."

Has a government any more right to be dishonest than an individual?

Both sides of the argument over the ratification by the United States of the treaty of peace with the Covenant for the League of Nations (see references).

The truth of the statement that "the only way to be sure of a perfect neighborhood is first to see to it that the homes of the neighborhood are strong and wholesome."

The meaning of the statement in the quotation at the end of the text above.

READINGS

In Long's AMERICAN PATRIOTIC PROSE:

Washington, "Farewell Address," pp. 105-124.

Washington, "Proclamation of Neutrality," pp. 143-146.

"The Monroe Doctrine," pp. 148-149.

John Quincy Adams, "The Mission of America," pp. 149-150.

George F. Hoar, "A Warning Against the Spirit of Empire," pp. 244- 247.

Woodrow Wilson, "Spirit of America," pp. 266-268.

Franklin K. Lane, "Why We Are Fighting Germany," pp. 282-283.

Carl Schurz, "The Rule of Honor for the Republic," pp. 342-343.

Woodrow Wilson, "War Message of April 2, 1917," pp. 351-361.

In Foerster and Pierson's AMERICAN IDEALS:

Washington, "Counsel on Alliances" (Farewell Address), pp. 185- 189.

"The Monroe Doctrine," pp. 190-193.

Henry Clay, "The Emancipation of South America," pp. 194-199.

Robert E. Lansing, "Pan-Americanism," pp. 200-296.

A. Lawrence Lowell, "A League to Enforce Peace," pp. 207-223.

George G. Wilson, "The Monroe Doctrine and the League to Enforce Peace," pp. 224-232.

Woodrow Wilson, "The Conditions of Peace," pp. 233-241.

Woodrow Wilson, "War for Democracy and Peace," pp. 242-256.

Various books and pamphlets have been written relating to the League of Nations and world relations following the war. Among these are:

THE LEAGUE OF NATIONS, edited by Henry E. Jackson (published by Prentice-Hall, Inc., 70 Fifth Ave., N.Y. Paper, 50 cents; cloth, $1). "A document prepared to stimulate community discussion and promote organized public opinion." This book contains, at the end, a list of titles of books and pamphlets on the subject.

The Lodge-Lowell DEBATE ON THE COVENANT OF THE LEAGUE OF NATIONS (World Peace Foundation, Boston). President Lowell, of Harvard University, argued for, and Senator Lodge against, the Covenant as contained in the treaty of peace.

Taft, William Howard, WHY A LEAGUE OF NATIONS IS NECESSARY (League to Enforce Peace, New York).

Sherman, Stuart P., AMERICAN AND ALLIED IDEALS (World Peace Foundation, Boston).

The complete official record of the United States Senate debate on the treaty of peace is to be found in the CONGRESSIONAL RECORD, a file of which SHOULD be in your public library.

THE JUNIOR RED CROSS NEWS, American Red Cross, Washington, D.C.

For the work of the Pan American Union and the Red Cross, consult your public library; and write to the Pan American Union and the American Red Cross, both in Washington, D.C., for descriptive publications.

For the Hague Conferences and the Hague Tribunal, consult any good modern encyclopedia, and your public library. Write for materials to the American School Citizenship League, 405 Marlboro St., Boston, and the World Peace Foundation, Boston.



CHAPTER IX

THE HOME

"NO NATION CAN BE DESTROYED WHILE IT POSSESSES A GOOD HOME LIFE."

The home is the smallest, the simplest, and the most familiar community of which we are members. In many respects it is also the most important. The quotation with which this chapter opens suggests this. It will appear at many points in our study.

What do you think that the quotation at the head of the chapter means? In what respects do you think it true?

Some cities take pride in the fact that they are "cities of homes." What does this mean? Why is it a cause for pride?

Is your community (neighborhood or town) a community of homes? What is a "home"? When a person is "homesick" for what is he "sick"?

May a good home exist in a poor dwelling? A poor home in a fine dwelling?

Is a hotel a home? May a family living in a hotel have a home there?

Is an orphan asylum a home? Would you exchange life in your own home for life in an orphan asylum? Why? There are children who think an orphan asylum is a fine place to live; why is this?

The home is important (1) because of what it does for its own members, and (2) because of what it does for the larger community of which it is a part. We shall consider first what it does for its own members.

THE PIONEER FAMILY

Under the conditions of pioneer life the wants of the members of the family were provided for almost entirely by their own united efforts. They built their own dwelling from materials which they themselves procured from the forest. They made their living from the land which they occupied, with tools which were largely homemade. They provided their own defense against attack from without and against sickness within. Such education as the children obtained was of the most practical kind, and was obtained by actual experience in their daily work supplemented by such instruction as parents and older brothers and sisters could give. There was little social life except within the family circle.

EFFECT OF COMMUNITY GROWTH

When other homes were built in the neighborhood a larger community life began. The neighboring homes came to depend upon one another and to cooperate in many ways. The store at the crossroads provided for many wants that each home had formerly provided for itself. The doctor who came to live in the community relieved the home of much anxiety in case of sickness. The education of the children was in part, at least, turned over to the community school. And so, as a community grows, the home shifts much of the responsibility for providing for the wants of its members upon community agencies.

DEPENDENCE OF THE CITY HOME

This shifting of responsibility for the welfare of citizens from the home to the larger community is carried furthest in cities. Almost everything wanted in the home may be bought in the city shops, and work that is done in the home for the family, such as repair work, dressmaking, laundry work, and cooking, is likely to be done by people brought in from outside. Water is piped in from a public water supply and sewage is piped out through public sewers. Gas and electricity for lighting and heating are furnished by city plants. Since many city homes have not a spot of ground for a garden or for outdoor play, they depend upon public parks and playgrounds provided by the city. These are among the many so- called advantages of city life.

THE OBLIGATION OF THE HOME

When so much is done for the citizen by the larger community agencies, there is danger that the family may forget its own responsibility for the welfare of its members in connection with every want of life. For no matter how good the community's arrangements for health protection may be, the health of every citizen depends more upon the home than upon any other agency (see Chapter XX). No matter how good the schools, the home always has great responsibility for the education of the children, both within the home itself and through cooperation with the schools (Chapter XIX). No matter how many social organizations and places of amusement the community may afford, the social and recreational life of the home is the most important of all and the most far- reaching in its influence (Chapter XXI). No matter how excellent the form of government in a community may be, its results will be very imperfect unless the government in each home is good.

IMPORTANCE OF THE HOME IN RURAL COMMUNITIES

The home has especial importance in the rural community of to-day. The rural home is no longer so isolated and self-dependent as the pioneer home, but the life of the rural citizen is much more dependent upon efforts within the home itself than the life of the city resident. The business of farming by which the family living is secured is carried on at home, and, as a rule, all the members of the family have some part in it. It is a cooperative family enterprise to a much greater extent than any other modern business.

In cities, in the great majority of cases, the work by which the family living is earned is done away from home, and very often no member of the family except the father has any direct part in it. There are numerous cases, however, where the mother and even the children go out to work, and in such cases the home life may be seriously interfered with.

It would be hard to find a rural home in the United States to-day that is not near enough to a schoolhouse to enable the children to attend it, at least for an elementary education. Unfortunately, high schools are not yet easily accessible in all rural communities (see Chapter XIX). But whether the education afforded by the rural school is of the best or not, the boy or girl on the farm gets in addition a kind of education through the varied occupations of the farm life that the city boy or girl does not get, and for which the city schools have tried in vain to find an adequate substitute. It is remarkable how many of the successful men and women of our country were raised on farms; and they almost always bear witness to the value of the training received there.

So in matters of health, of social life and recreation, of pleasant and beautiful surroundings, the rural home must depend very largely upon itself. The strength and happiness of the community, of our nation itself, depend largely upon the extent to which the homes perform their proper work in providing for the wants of their members.

Review what was said in Chapter II regarding the independence of the pioneer family.

Review also what was said in Chapter I regarding the growing dependence of the family upon the community.

Gather stories regarding pioneer home life (a) in your own locality, (b) in the settlement of the West; (c) in colonial times. Illustrate from these stories how the home provided for the wants of its members.

Show in detail how the various members of a farmer's family take part in the business of farming. Compare with a family in town whose living is provided for by some other business.

Make a list of the different people who come to the home of a family in town to provide for its wants (such as the grocer's boy, the milkman, the postman, etc.). Compare with a farmer's home with respect to this service from outside.

LABOR SAVING IN THE HOME

We have read in an earlier chapter that "our national purpose is to transmute days of dreary work into happier lives—for ourselves first and for all others in their time." This purpose cannot be fully achieved if it is not first of all achieved in the home. One of the objections often raised to life on the farm is that it is a life of drudgery, of few conveniences and comforts, of long hours, hard work, and little recreation. Happily this is not so true as it once was. Labor-saving machinery, better methods of transportation and communication, better schools, have done much to improve conditions of rural home life. But occasionally there still come statements like the following from some of the women in farm homes:

In many homes life on the farm is a somewhat one-sided affair. Many times the spare money above living expenses is expended on costly machinery and farm implements to make the farmer's work lighter; on more land where there is already a sufficiency; on expensive horses and cattle and new out-buildings; while little or nothing is done for home improvement and no provision made for the comfort and convenience of the women of the family.

If a silo will help to reduce the man's labor, a vacuum cleaner will do likewise for his wife. If the stock at the barn needs a good water system to help it grow, the stock in the house needs it too, and needs it warm for baths.

You see many a farm where there is a cement floor in the barn, while the cellar in the house is awful. A sheep dip, but no bathtub; a fine buggy and a poor baby carriage. On many farms a hundred dollars in cash are not spent in the home in a year.

EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES IN THE HOME

These are not meant as complaints about the purchase of labor- saving farm machinery. Such complaints would be short-sighted, for it is only by improved methods of farming that the means and the leisure can be found to enrich the home life in every way. But the advantages gained by improvements that increase the farmer's returns are largely lost if they do not at the same time bring "happier lives" to the family as a whole. The farm home is not only the place where the family living is EARNED; it is also the place where the family life is LIVED. Democracy aims at EQUAL opportunity to enjoy "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness"; "days of dreary work" must be transmuted into "happier lives" for the women and children as well as for the men. Unless this is done in the home there is little chance of its being done at all.

A story is told of a housekeeper in a farm-home in the West who saw in the sacred rite of old-school housekeepers something more than scrubbing and polishing ... When her housecleaning was over she knew just what linen she would need during the coming year, just how much fruits and vegetables she would need to can or preserve or dry, just what clothing must be replaced or repaired, and what dishes would be needed to keep her set complete. She not only made changes to improve the appearance of her house, but planned and made the changes in her workshop which would save steps and make her work as easy as possible. When her mind got to work, housekeeping became a game, the object being to eliminate all unnecessary labor. Her benches and tables and sinks were raised to the proper height and she became ashamed of the back- breaking energy she had wasted bending over them. A high stool, made by removing the back and arms from the baby's outgrown high chair, made dishwashing and ironing much easier. She has been housekeeping intelligently a dozen years, yet each house-cleaning or stock-taking period she installs some new labor saver.

She not only makes her head save her heels, but she takes another kind of inventory which is as well worth while. It is the inventory which we all need to take of ourselves to be sure that we are making the best of our opportunities instead of drifting along day by day in a rut. She searches out the hidden places in her soul to see if she is just as patient, as thoughtful, as cheerful as she might be ... [Footnote: RECLAMATION RECORD, Feb., 1918, p.55, "Project Women and Their Materials," by Mrs. Louella Littlepage.]

COMMUNITY COOPERATION AND THE HOME

In some rural communities the home has been relieved of much of the household drudgery by the development of cooperative creameries, cooperative laundries, and other community institutions to do work that was formerly done entirely in the home. In such cooperative enterprises, citizens of the community buy shares of stock as in the case of the fruit growers' association. In one community in Michigan "a vote was taken, the women voting as well as the men, to determine the sentiment of the community on the establishment of such a laundry, and the vote was so overwhelmingly in favor of the proposition that the Farmers' Club promptly called a meeting to promote the enterprise." An addition was built to the cooperative creamery, which the community already possessed, so that the same steam plant could be used for both. The farmers brought their laundry when they brought their cream, and carried it back on the next trip. "The laundry has been successful in relieving the hard life of a farmer's wife, and in addition has been not only self-sustaining but a profitable institution." One of the women of the community says,

It has lightened the work in the home to such an extent that one can manage the work without keeping help, which is very scarce and high priced, when it would be impossible to do so if the washing was included with our other duties.

And another writes,

This change gives me two days of recreation that I can call my own every week and also gives me more time in which to accomplish the household duties. [Footnote: "A Successful Rural Cooperative Laundry," in the Year Book, Department of Agriculture, 1915, pp. 189-194.]

GOVERNMENT SERVES THE HOME

A great deal of help is now being given to the home by the government, and this is especially true in the case of the rural home. The public schools, both in city and country, now consider home making and "home economics" as worthy of a place in the course of study as geography and mathematics (see Chapter XIX). State agricultural colleges are beginning to give as much attention to these subjects as they do to soils and fertilizers and stock-breeding. Moreover, the colleges conduct "extension courses," sending teachers trained in the art of home making to give instruction to women and girls in every part of the state. They assist in organizing clubs of girls and women to study various aspects of home making and housekeeping, and give demonstrations of the most successful methods of cooking, of canning, and of other activities connected with home life on the farm, as well as of labor-saving devices in the household. The state agricultural colleges have the cooperation of the Department of Agriculture of the national government in all this work.

WHAT ONE GIRL ACCOMPLISHED

In the Year Book of the Department of Agriculture for 1916 there is an account of results derived from home demonstration work in the Southern States. The following story of what Ruth Anderson accomplished is a good illustration of the possibilities of this work.

Ruth Anderson, of Etowah County, Alabama, in her second year of club work, had an excellent plot of one tenth of an acre of beans and tomatoes. She is the second girl in a family of eleven, and takes a great interest in her club work. The family home was small, dark, and crowded, and somewhat unattractive. One day a carpenter friend of her father saw her one tenth of an acre and said he wished he had time to plant a garden. She told him she would furnish vegetables in exchange for some of his time. ... After a while a bargain was made by which the carpenter agreed to begin work on the remodeling of the house if Ruth would furnish him with fresh and canned vegetables for the season.

The other members of the family were soon interested in this undertaking and worked willingly to contribute their share to its success. When the house was partly finished Ruth won a canning- club prize given by a hardware merchant in Gadsden, the county seat. Silverware was offered her, but, intent upon completing the new house she asked the merchant how much a front door of glass would cost, and learned that she could get the door, side lights, and windows for the price of the silverware. In this way Ruth brought light and joy to her family with her windows and door. To- day they live in a pretty bungalow that she helped to build with her gardening and canning work. At the age of 14, in the second year of her work, Ruth put up 700 cans of tomatoes and 750 cans of beans. [Footnote: "Effect of Home Demonstration Work in the South," in 1916 Year Book of the Department of Agriculture, p. 254.]

Ruth's home before and after she began her work is shown in the accompanying illustrations.

NATIONAL AID TO THE HOME

The national government helps in home making in other ways than those suggested above, and through other departments than that of agriculture. In the Department of the Interior the General Land Office, the Bureau of Education, the Reclamation Service, the Office of Indian Affairs are all doing work to improve the homes of the land. So, also, is the Public Health Service of the Treasury Department; the Bureau of Standards in the Department of Commerce; the Children's Bureau in the Department of Labor. We shall encounter some of this work as we proceed with our study.

In what ways has household work been relieved of its drudgery since your mothers were girls?

What labor-saving devices have been introduced in your home?

Make a report on labor-saving inventions for the household (see references at end of chapter).

What are some labor-saving household devices that could be made by boys and girls (such as fireless cookers, iceless refrigerators, etc.)? (See references below). Can your school help in such projects? To what extent could (or do) boys' and girls' clubs undertake such projects? Is there any leader in your community who could direct or advise in such projects?

Is the kitchen in your home properly arranged to save steps, labor, and time in doing kitchen work? Consider plans for improvement. Consult parents.

Does experience in your community confirm the feeling of the women quoted on page 104?

Are there any cooperative enterprises in your community that relieve the housekeeper of household labor, such as cooperative laundries, creameries, etc.? Are they a business success? Have they improved conditions of home life?

What is the difference between a "cooperative" laundry and an ordinary laundry such as may be found in most towns? Does one relieve the home more than the other?

What other business enterprises are carried on in towns that relieve the home of work? Why are such business enterprises not conducted in the same way in rural communities?

Is there any special interest in home improvement in your community? Who or what has brought it about? What can you do to encourage such interest?

READINGS

"Lessons in Community and National Life": Series C, Lesson 20, "The Family and Social Control."

For an extensive list of titles of publications relating to the home, send to the United States Bureau of Education for its Bulletin, 1919, No. 46, "Bibliography of Home Economics," especially section VIII on "The Family," and section X on "The House and Household Activities." Among the many titles given in this are:

Earle, Alice Morse, "Home Life in Colonial Days" (Macmillan).

Gillette, J. M., "The Family and Society" (A. C. McClurg).

Thwing and Butler, "The Family" (Lothrop, Lee and Shepard Co.).

Gilman, Charlotte P., The Home (Doubleday, Page and Co.).

Talbot and Breckenridge, "The Modern Household" (Whitcomb and Barrows, Boston).

Addams, Jane, The Spirit of Youth and the City Streets (Macmillan).

Ellwood, Charles A., "Sociology and Modern Social Problems," chapters on the family (American Book Co.).

Scott, Rhea, "Home Labor-Saving Devices" (Lippincott).

Foght, H. W., "The Rural Teacher and his Work," Part I, chap. iii.

U. S. Department of Agriculture, Office of the Secretary, Reports 103, 104, 105, 106:

"Social and Labor Needs of Farm Women." "Domestic Needs of Farm Women." "Educational Needs of Farm Women." "Economic Needs of Farm Women."

These reports can be obtained only from the Superintendent of Documents, Government Printing Office, 15 cents each.

"The American Farm Woman as She Sees Herself," U. S. Department of Agriculture Year Book, 1914, pp. 311-318.

"Selection of Household Equipment," Department of Agriculture Year Book 1914, pp. 330-362.

Dunn, Arthur W., "The Community and the Citizen," chaps, v, vi.



CHAPTER X

WHY GOVERNMENT HELPS IN HOME MAKING

Our nation requires healthy citizens, intelligent citizens, prosperous and happy citizens. The home can do more to produce them than any other community agency. Therefore the nation is wise to look after its homes.

RELATION OF HOME CONDITIONS TO INDUSTRY

People cannot do their work well if they live in unwholesome or unpleasant homes. This was made clear during the recent war. The lack of suitable living places for workmen and their families was one of the chief obstacles to shipbuilding and munitions manufacture during the early part of the war. England found this out as well as the United States, and one of the first things both countries had to do was to take measures to provide proper home conditions for those who were engaged in supplying the nation's needs. During the first year of the war our Congress appropriated $200,000,000 to build houses for industrial workers.

The problem of securing good physical conditions of home life has naturally been greatest in crowded industrial centers, but it is by no means absent in small communities, or even in the open country. One writer describes a certain farmhouse where five people were accustomed to sleep in one not very large bedroom, which had only one small window, and even that was nailed shut, one of these five had incipient tuberculosis. These people were well-to-do farmers, living in a large twelve-room, stone house and simply crowded into one room for the sake of mistaken economy— presumably to save coal and wood.

Many such cases could be described, not only in the more remote and backward regions, but even in prosperous farming communities.

What is the result of this overcrowding and lack of proper housing in the country? Just exactly the same as in the great cities—lack of efficiency, disease, and premature death to many ... While the great majority of people subjected to overcrowding and bad housing conditions do not prematurely die, yet they have a lessened physical and mental vigor, are less able to do properly their daily work, and not only become a loss to themselves and their families, but to the state ... [Footnote: Bashore, "Overcrowding and defective housing in the rural districts," quoted in Nourse, AGRICULTURAL ECONOMICS, pp. 118, 119, 121.]

STRENGTH OF THE NATION DEPENDS ON THE HOME

Some of our states and many of our cities have laws to regulate housing conditions, but such laws seldom apply to small communities. In cities where people live crowded together in closely built city blocks, unsanitary conditions in one home endanger the health of the entire community. There is also danger from fire, and vice and crime may breed and spread quickly and unseen. The community is driven, therefore, in its own defense, to regulate the people's housing. In small communities, and especially in rural communities, where homes are more widely separated and in some cases quite isolated, it has seemed of little concern to others how one citizen builds his home and what he does in it. Thoughtful consideration of such cases as that described above, however, must convince us that it IS a matter of national concern what happens even in remote homes. Both the physical and the economic strength of the nation are undermined by unwholesome conditions in the separate homes of the land.

COMMUNITY PLANNING

Economic loss to the community may result not merely from UNWHOLESOME home conditions, but also from INCONVENIENCE of location and arrangement of the homes. A good deal of attention is being given to "community planning" in the United States and especially in England and other European countries. Community planning includes not only provision for the proper location and construction of public buildings and streets, for water supply, lights, parks, etc., but also for the convenient, as well as wholesome and pleasant location of homes. Large cities, like London, New York, Philadelphia, and Chicago, have spent enormous sums of money in city planning after they have already grown up without plan. It has necessitated destroying old structures and widening streets. Villages and small towns are in a position to introduce a plan for future growth without this needless expense. Our beautiful capital city of Washington has grown according to a plan that was carefully laid out before a building was erected. But even in Washington one of the greatest problems the city had to face during the war was that of providing homes for the enormous number of workers who came to the city to do the work of the government.

PLANNING THE FARMSTEAD

"The need of careful arrangement in country homes is much more urgent than in city homes for the reason that country people use their homes as the business center of their profession," says Prof. R.J. Pearce, of Iowa State College. "The farmer in his business center must not only produce enough raw material to provide for him self and family, but he needs to produce enough to feed and clothe the entire human race." "CONSERVATION OF SPACE must be taken into consideration to obtain the greatest results from our high-priced land; CONVENIENCE must be a prime factor when expensive labor is at a premium; and ATTRACTIVENESS must be one of the chief motives not only to make farm property more saleable but to give greater enjoyment to the owner and his family..." "A farmstead is, but a unit in a farming community, yet travelers form an impression of the entire community by individual farm homes which they see in passing. Therefore, not only financial consideration but personal pride and a feeling of community spirit and enterprise should urge the farm owner to develop his farmstead according to the best of modern methods."

What facts can you find in regard to what the government did to provide homes for workers in shipbuilding or munitions plants during the war?

In many of the war industries preference was given to men with families in employing workmen. Why was this?

In some rural communities in the United States a "teacherage" (home for the teacher) is provided. Of what advantage to the community is this?

Is there a "housing problem" in your community?

Are there any laws in your state regulating the building of homes? If so, what are some of them? Do they apply in your community? Are they carefully observed and enforced?

Make a study of the arrangement of the buildings on farms with which you are familiar, drawing diagrams, and report whether or not they are well planned with reference to ECONOMY OF SPACE occupied, CONVENIENCE, and ATTRACTIVENESS. Consider

(a) Are they properly placed with reference to the highway?

(b) Are they conveniently placed in relation to one another?

(c) Are they suitably protected from the prevailing winds? How?

(d) What makes them attractive or unattractive?

(e) Are the stables properly situated to protect the health of the family? How?

Must a home be large and costly to be attractive?

What impression would a stranger get in regard to the "community spirit" of your community from the appearance of its homes? Would he be right?

THE HOME AND COMMUNITY STABILITY

Home ownership is one of the strongest influences that give permanence and stability to the community. The census taken by the United States government every ten years shows that home ownership has been decreasing throughout the country as a whole. The decrease has been greatest in cities, but it is true also of farmhome ownership. In 1880 only 25% of the farms of the United States were occupied by tenants (renters); in 1910, 37% were so occupied. It is true that in the ten years from 1900 to 1910 there was a slight increase in the proportion of farms owned by their occupants in the New England and Middle Atlantic states, and in a large part of the West; but the increase in these parts was more than overbalanced by the decrease in the South Atlantic and Gulf states and in the Mississippi Valley. The smallest proportion of farm tenancy is found in New England (8%), and the largest in the southern states (45.9% in the South Atlantic states, and more than 50% in the South central states). A large part of the farming in the South is done by negroes, most of whom are either laborers on the farms of the white population or tenants on small farms which they usually work on shares. And yet the number of negro farm owners in the South has been rapidly increasing in the last few years, though not so rapidly as the number of tenants. In 1910 negro farm owners cultivated nearly 16,000,000 acres of land in the South, all of which they have acquired since the Civil War.

EFFECTS OF DECLINE OF HOME OWNERSHIP

The decline in home ownership both in the cities and in the rural districts of the United States has been observed with considerable anxiety because of the effect upon our national welfare and upon the citizenship of the country. One writer says:

Farming is a permanent business; it is no "fly by night" occupation. ... No man can pull up stakes and leave a farm at the close of the year without sacrificing the results of labor which he has done ... The renter who ends harvest knowing that he will move in the spring, will not do as good a job of hauling manure and fall plowing as he would were he to stay; nor does he take as good care of the buildings and other improvements ...

The cost to the farming business of the country each year for this annual farm moving-week mounts into the millions of dollars. And the pity of it all is that practically no one is the winner thereby ... The renter loses, the landlord loses, the general community and the nation at large lose. [Footnote: W.D. Boyce, in an editorial in THE FARMING BUSINESS, February 26, 1916, quoted in Nourse, AGRICULTURAL ECONOMICS, p. 651.]

Tenant farming also places obstacles in the way of community progress in other ways.

The tenant takes little interest in community affairs. The questions of schools, churches, or roads are of little moment to him. He does not wish to invest in enterprises which will of necessity be left wholly ... to his successor. In short, he is in the community, but hardly of it. [Footnote: B.H. Hibbard, "Farm Tenancy in the United States," in Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, March, 1912, p. 39.]

A family that owns its home feels a sense of proprietorship in a part of the community land. The money value of a home increases in proportion to the prosperity of the community as a whole; its owner will therefore be inclined to do all he can to promote the welfare of the community. A community that is made up largely of homes owned by their occupants is likely to be more prosperous and more progressive, and its citizens more loyal to it, than a community whose families are tenants.

THE TENANT AS A CITIZEN

While all that has been said in the preceding paragraph is true, it must not be thought that tenancy is necessarily a bad thing in all cases, nor that a man who does not own his home cannot be a thoroughly good citizen. There are circumstances that make it necessary for many families to live in dwellings that they do not own. Tenancy may be a step toward home ownership. A citizen may have insufficient money to buy a farm, but enough to enable him to rent one. By industry, economy, and intelligence, he may soon accumulate means with which to buy the farm he occupies or some other. The increase in the number of tenants in the Southern States is due in large part to the breaking up of many larger plantations into small farms which are occupied by tenants, many of them negroes. That many of these tenants are on the road to home ownership is indicated by the facts stated on page 117.

It is as much the duty of the home renter as it is of the home owner to take an interest in the community life in which he and his family share, and to cooperate with his neighbors for the common good. While he lives in the community he is largely dependent upon it, like any other citizen, for the satisfaction of his wants. Its markets and its roads are his for the transportation and disposal of his produce and stock. He gets the benefit of its schools for the education of his children. He may share in its social life if he cares to do so. His property is protected by the same agencies that protect that of his neighbors. He cannot, therefore, escape the responsibility of contributing to the progress of his community to the extent of his ability.

Previous Part     1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9     Next Part
Home - Random Browse