Yet these are the very people who may jostle us harshly later on in the racial struggle.
I am not suggesting that when the Chinese adopts the cult of the West, and comes into general contact with it—and I believe that I am right in saying that this is the desire, generally speaking, of the whole of the enlightened classes—he continues with his few wants. As a matter of fact, he does not. He is as extravagant, and perhaps more so, than the most of us. I have seen Straits Chinese waste at the gaming tables in their gorgeous clubs as much in one night as some European residents handle in one year, and he is quick to get his motor-car, his horses and carriages, and endless other ornaments of wealth. So that if progress in the course of the evolution of nations means that the Chinese too will demand all that the European now demands, and will cease to find satisfaction in the existing conditions of his life in the new goal towards which he is moving, and if he, in course of time, should increase the cost of living per head to equal that of the Westerner, then he will lose a good deal of the advantage he now undoubtedly has in the struggle for racial supremacy. But if, gradually taking advantage of all in religion, in science, in literature, in art, in modern naval and military equipment and skill, and all that has made nations great and made for real progress in the West, he were also to continue his present hardy frugality in living—which is not a tenth as costly in proportion to that of the Occident—then his advantage in entering upon the conflict among the nations for ultimate supremacy would be undoubted, immeasurable.