Adjusting heredity and
Most people live a narrow existence. Perhaps the great majority of men and women find their safety in this kind of a life. The adjustment of heredity and environment is not an easy task to one who lives an unsheltered life. The ordinary person, thrown on his own resources, is poorly equipped for existence. His opinions on most matters are not sound. He uses poor judgment as to how he shall spend the little money he gets. He is generally driven by debts and harassed in all his efforts to get a living. A large family adds to his trouble and his existence is a constant struggle with what, to him, is an almost hopeless fate.
Industrial conditions for the most part are relentless and hard. The poor man is thrown into competition with his fellows for work. He may get along when work is easy to get and wages are good, but in dull times he falls behind, and is in hopeless trouble. His life is a long, hard struggle to make adjustments to his environment, and it is not strange that he goes down so often before the heavy task. Failure to make proper adjustments directly and indirectly often means prison to him.
Again, the ordinary and especially the weak man is hopelessly puzzled by his environment. It must never be overlooked that man has a lowly origin. The marks of his humble birth are in his whole structure and life. His make-up has been the work of the ages. He is a late development of a life that knew nothing of law, as law is understood today. His ancestors were hungry and went out after food, they killed their prey and took their food by main strength whenever they had the power. They were subject to certain customs which were very strict, but which were few and did not seriously complicate life. They knew only the law of force. Their existence was simple and primal, and they were governed by no “rights,” except such simple ones as were made by might and custom.