The Pivot of Civilization eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 187 pages of information about The Pivot of Civilization.

     (1) Quoted in the National Catholic Welfare Council
     Bulletin:  Vol.  II, No. 5, p. 21 (January, 1921).

     (2) Quoted in daily press, December 19, 1921.

     (3) H. C. Lea:  History of Sacerdotal Celibacy
     (Philadelphia, 1967).

     (4) Eugenics Review, January 1921.

     (5) Fabian Tract No. 131.

CHAPTER X:  Science the Ally

“There is but one hope.  Ignorance, poverty, and vice must stop populating the world.  This cannot be done by moral suasion.  This cannot be done by talk or example.  This cannot be done by religion or by law, by priest or by hangman.  This cannot be done by force, physical or moral.  To accomplish this there is but one way.  Science must make woman the owner, the mistress of herself.  Science, the only possible savior of mankind, must put it in the power of woman to decide for herself whether she will or will not become a mother.”

     Robert G. Ingersoll

“Science is the great instrument of social change,” wrote A. J. Balfour in 1908; “all the greater because its object is not change but knowledge, and its silent appropriation of this dominant function, amid the din of religious and political strife, is the most vital of all revolutions which have marked the development of modern civilization.”  The Birth Control movement has allied itself with science, and no small part of its present propaganda is to awaken the interest of scientists to the pivotal importance to civilization of this instrument.  Only with the aid of science is it possible to perfect a practical method that may be universally taught.  As Dean Inge recently admitted:  “We should be ready to give up all our theories if science proved that we were on the wrong lines.”

One of the principal aims of the American Birth Control League has been to awaken the interest of scientific investigators and to point out the rich field for original research opened up by this problem.  The correlation of reckless breeding with defective and delinquent strains, has not, strangely enough, been subjected to close scientific scrutiny, nor has the present biological unbalance been traced to its root.  This is a crying necessity of our day, and it cannot be accomplished without the aid of science.

Secondary only to the response of women themselves is the awakened interest of scientists, statisticians, and research workers in every field.  If the clergy and the defenders of traditional morality have opposed the movement for Birth Control, the response of enlightened scientists and physicians has been one of the most encouraging aids in our battle.

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The Pivot of Civilization from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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