Page 4068

4068 UNIVERSAL HISTORY-THE MODERN WORLD.

reared as the ramparts of civilization, and

for which an enlightened people have no

more need than for a Chinese wall.

One of the greatest enemies of freedom,

and therefore of the progress and happiness

of our race, is over-organization. Mankinds

have been organized to death. The social,

political, and ecclesiastical forms which have

been instituted have become so hard and

cold and obdurate that the life, the emotion,

the soul within, has been well-nigh extinguished. Among all the civil, political, and

churchly institutions of the world, it would

be difficult to-day to select that one which

is not in a large measure conducted in the

interest of the official management. The

Organization has become the principal thing,

and the Man only a secondary consideration. It must be served and obeyed. He

may be despised and neglected. It must

be consulted, honored, feared; crowned with

flowers, starred and studded with gold. He

may be left a starving pauper, homeless,

friendless, childless, shivering in mildewed

tatters-a scavenger, and beggar at the

doorway of the court.

All this must presently be reversed. Organization is not the principal thing; man

himself is better. The institution, the party,

the creed, the government,-that does not

serve him; does not conduce to his interests,

progress, and enlightenment; is not only a

piece of superfluous rubbish on the stage of

modern civilization, but Is a real stumbling block, a positive clog and detriment to the

welfare and best hopes of mankind.

Closely allied with this overwrought organization of society is the pernicious theory

of paternalism-that delusive, medieval doctrine, which proposes to effect the social and

individual elevation of man by "protecting,"

and therefore subduing, him. The theory is

that man is a sort of half-infant, half-imbecile-a hybrid of child and devil-who must

be led along and guarded as one would

lead and guard a foolish and impertinent

barbarian. It is believed and taught that

men seek not their own best interests; that

they are the natural enemies and destroyers

of their own peace; that human energy,

when liberated and no longer guided by the

factitious machinery of society and the

State, either slides rapidly backward into

barbarism, or rushes forward only to stumble and fall headlong by its own audacity.

Therefore, society must be a good mistress,

a garrulous old nurse to her children! She

must take care of them; teach them what to

do; lead them by the swaddling bands; coax

them into some feeble and well-regulated

activity; feed them on her insipid porridge

with the antiquated spoons of her superstition. The State must govern and repress.

The State must strengthen her apparatus,

improve her machine. She must put her

subjects down; she must keep them down.

She must teach them to be tame and tractable; to go at her will; to rise, to halt, to

sit, to sleep, to wake at her bidding; to be

humble and meek. And all this with the

belief that men so subordinated and put

down can be, should be, ought to be, great

and happy! They are so well cared for, so

happily governed!

On the contrary, if history has proved-does prove-any one thing, it is this: Man

when least governed is greatest. When his

heart, his brain, his limbs are unbound, he

straightway begins to flourish, to triumph,

to be glorious. Then, indeed, he sends up

the green and blossoming trees of his ambition. Then, indeed, he flings out both hands

to grasp the skyland and the stars. Then,

indeed, he feels no longer a need for the

mastery of society; no longer a want of

some guardian and intermeddling State to

inspire and direct his energies. He grows

in freedom. His philanthropy expands; his

nature rises to a noble stature; he springs

forward to grasp the grand substance, the

shadow of which he has seen in his dreams.

He is happy. He feels himself released from

the domination of an artificial scheme which

has been used for long ages for the subjection of his fathers and himself. What men

want, what they need, what they hunger

for, what they will one day have the courage

to demand and take, is less organic government-not more; a freer manhood and

fewer shackles; a more cordial liberty; a

lighter fetter of form, and a more spontaneous virtue.

Of all things that are incidentally needed

to usher in the promised democracy and

brotherhood of man-the coming new era of