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need of inquiries made on a more wholesale and systematic scale. They
are no longer of a merely speculative character. We no longer regard
children as the 'gifts of God' flung into our helpless hands; we are
beginning to realize that the responsibility is ours to see that they
come into the world under the best conditions, and at the moments when
their parents are best fitted to produce them. Vaerting proposes that it
should be the business of all school authorities to register the ages of
the pupils' parents. This is scarcely a provision to which even the most
susceptible parent could reasonably object, though there is no cause to
make the declaration compulsory where a 'conscientious' objection
existed, and in any case the declaration would not be public.
"It would be an advantage--although this might be more difficult to
obtain--to have the date of the children's marriage, and of the birth of
previous children, as well as some record of the father's standing in
his occupation. But even the ages of the parents alone would teach us
much when correlated with the school position of the pupil in
intelligence and conduct. It is quite true that there are unavoidable
fallacies. We are not, as in the case of genius, dealing with people
whose life-work is complete and open to the whole world's examination.
"The good and clever child is not necessarily the forerunner of the
first-class man or woman; and many capable and successful men have been
careless in attendance at lectures, and rebellious to discipline.
Moreover, the prejudice and limitations of the teachers have to be
recognized. Yet when we are dealing with millions most of these
fallacies would be smoothed out. We should be, once for all, in a
position to determine authoritatively the exact bearing of one of the
simplest and most vital factors of the betterment of the race. We should
be in possession of a new clue to guide us in the creation of the man in
the coming world. Why not begin today?"
Considerable attention on the part of the American thinking public has
been directed toward the investigations and researches of Casper L.
Redfield. Mr. Redfield combats the orthodox scientific position that the
acquired qualities are not transmitted to offspring; and he most
positively states that such characteristics are transmitted to
offspring, and are really the causes which have tended toward the
evolution and progress of the race. But he insists upon this vital
point, namely, that the parent must already have acquired improved
quality before he can transmit improvement to the offspring--and that
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