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democracy, alike in the field of morals and jurisprudence, and in the field of manufactures and trade. Nowhere, for instance, has the great principle of religious toleration been
so thoroughly put in practice as in the United States; 5 nowhere have such well-meant and persistent efforts been made to improve the legal status of women; nowhere has the conduct of hospitals, asylums, reformatories and prisons been more carefully studied; nowhere have
legislative remedies for acknowledged abuses and evils 10 been more promptly and perseveringly sought. There
was a certain plausibility in the idea that the multitude, who live by labor in established modes, would be opposed to inventions which would inevitably cause industrial
revolutions, but American experience completely upsets 15 this notion. For promptness, in making physical forces
and machinery do the work of men, the people of the United States surpass incontestably all other peoples. The people that invented and introduced with perfect
commercial success the river steamboat, the cotton-gin, 20 the parlor-car and the sleeping car, the grain elevator, the
street railway both surface and elevated, the telegraph, the telephone, the rapid printing-press, the cheap book and newspaper, the sewing-machine, the steam fire-engine,
agricultural machinery, the pipe-lines for natural oil and 25 gas, and machine-made clothing, boots, furniture, tools,
screws, wagons, fire-arms and watches, - this is not a people to vote down or hinder labor-saving invention or beneficent industrial revolution. The fact is that in a
democracy the interests of the greater number will ul30 timately prevail, as they should. It was the stage drivers
and inn-keepers, not the multitude, who wished to suppress the locomotive; it is the publishers and the typographical unions, not the mass of the people, who wrongly
imagine that they have an interest in making books dearer 35 than they need be. Furthermore, a just liberty of com
bination and perfect equality before the law, such as pre
vail in a democracy, enable men or companies to engage freely in new undertakings at their own risk and bring them to triumphant success, if success be in them, whether the multitude approve them or not. The consent of the multitude is not necessary to the success of a printing press 5 which prints twenty thousand copies of a newspaper in an hour, or of a machine-cutter 'which cuts out twenty overcoats at one chop. In short, the notion that democracy will hinder religious, polítical, and social reformation and progress, or restrain commercial and indus- 10 trial improvement, is a chimera.
FIVE AMERICAN CONTRIBUTIONS TO
CIVILIZATION BY CHARLES W. ELIOT. (August 19, 1896) THESE five contributions to civilization - peacekeeping, religious toleration, the development of manhood suffrage, the welcoming of newcomers, and the diffusion of well-being - I hold to have been eminently charac-15 teristic of our country, and so important that, in spite of the qualifications and deductions which every candid citizen would admit with regard to every one of them, they will ever be held in the grateful remembrance of mankind. They are reasonable grounds for a steady, 20 glowing patriotism. They have had much to do, both as causes and as effects, with the material prosperity of the United States; but they are all five essentially moral contributions, being triumphs of reason, enterprise, courage, faith, and justice, over passion, selfishness, 25 inertness, timidity, and distrust. Beneath each one of these developments there lies a strong ethical sentiment, a strenuous moral and social purpose. It is for such work that multitudinous democracies are fit.
In regard to all five of these contributions, the charac- 30
teristic policy of our country has been from time to time threatened with reversal - is even now so threatened. It is for true patriots to insist on the maintenance of these historic purposes and policies of the people of the United 5 States. Our country's future perils, whether already visible or still unimagined, are to be met with courage and constancy founded firmly on these popular achievements in the past.
DEMOCRACY By HENRY VAN DYKE. (OCTOBER, 1905) In regard to this democratic method of electing rulers 10 there are some things which I should like to say, with as much emphasis and clearness as may be consistent with brevity.
It is the highest and most reasonable method. In the case of ignorant, undeveloped peoples, with whom the 15 impulse of resistance is stronger than the instinct of order,
the other methods may be necessary. But they are to be considered as educative, corrective, disciplinary. All peoples, like all children, should be regarded as on their
way to self-rule. When they are able to maintain it, 20 they are entitled to have it. All arguments against the
democratic method, based on the weakness, folly, and selfishness of human nature, apply with greater force to the autocratic and automatic methods. The individual
follies of a multitude of men often neutralize one another, 25 leaving an active residuum of plain common sense. But
for a fool king there is no natural antidote; and sometimes men have dly found that the only way to set his head straight was to remove it.
It is said that democracies are peculiarly subject to 30 the microbes of financial delusion and the resultant boom
fever and panic-chill. But the Mississippi Scheme and the South Sea Bubble flourished under monarchical in
stitutions; and the worst-depreciated currencies in the world have been stamped with the image and superscription of kings.
It is said that democracies sometimes choose weak, incompetent, and even bad men for their ruling classes. So they do. But they have no monopoly in this respect. The automatic method of selecting rulers produced Charles II and James II and George III. It would be difficult to surpass in any republic the folly which selected Lord North to guide the policy of Great Britain at a time 10 when Lord Chatham, Charles James Fox, and Edmund Burke were on the stage. Yet this was done, not by an ignorant democracy but by an automatic King. Nor does the autocratic plan of allowing rulers to choose themselves work any more infallibly. France had two ex- 15 amples of it in the last century. Napoleon I was a catastrophe. Napoleon III was a crime.
All that may be said of the propriety of appealing to Providence and trusting God for the ordaining of the powers that be, applies to the democratic method even 20 more than to any other. Why should we suppose that Providence has anything more to do with the ambition of a strong man to climb a throne, than with the desire of a great people to make a strong man their leader? Why should we imagine that God is any more willing to direct 25 the intricacies of royal marriages, and regulate the matrimonial alliances of titled personages, for the sake of producing proper kings and lords, than to guide the thoughts and desires of a great people and turn their hearts to the choice of good presidents? The characteristic of de- 30 mocracy, says James Russell Lowell, is its habit of "asking the Powers that Be, at the most inconvenient moment, whether they are the Powers that Ought to Be.” And what is this question but an appeal to the divine judgment and law ?
There is as much room for Providence to act in the
growth of public opinion as in the rise and propagation of a royal house. What royal house is there that goes so far to vindicate the ways of God to man as the succession of Presidents chosen by the people of the American Republic? Some of the choices have not been brilliant, a few have been unfortunate, none has been evil or corrupt. There is no line of hereditary kings, no line of autocratic emperors that claims as many great men, or half as many
good men, in an equal period of time, as the line of Presi1o dents of the United States.
There is warrant, then, in reason and in experience, for believing in the divine right of democracy. It is not the only righteous and lawful method of selecting rulers, but
it is the highest and most reasonable. We lift our pa15 triotism above the shallow and flashy enthusiasm for institutions merely because they are ours. We confide ourselves to the hopeful and progressive view of human nature, to the faith that God is able to make truth and right reason prevail in the arena of public opinion. We bless the memory of our first and greatest hero because he had no desire for a crown, and so, by his personal influence, helped to make the choice of ruling classes in the United States neither autocratic nor automatic, but democratic.
THE HOME AS A NATION BUILDER
BY HENRY VAN DYKE. (OCTOBER, 1905) The causes which control the development of national character are threefold: domestic, political, and religious ; the home, the state, and the church.
The home comes first because it is the seed-plot and nursery of virtue.
noble nation of ignoble households 30 is impossible. Our greatest peril to-day is in the decline
of domestic morality, discipline, and piety. The degradation of the poor by overcrowding in great tenements,