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namely to 12, so we see an actual gain in population, instead of a loss.
And the physical constitution of the people has been improving * * *.
And in New Zealand, where the sale of contraceptives is practically
free, the birth rate is now 20, and the mortality rate is 10. Does that
look like race suicide? On the contrary, there is a steady increase at
the rate of ten per cent, while sickness and death of children, with
their attendant economic and emotional waste, are reduced to a minimum."
Not only are the children of small families as a rule better cared for,
from economic reasons easy to discern, but it is also a fact that the
health of the mothers is far better, and consequently the health of the
children when born is better than the average. One has but to look
around him upon the families who boast of having had eight, ten, and
twelve children born to them, to see what a frightful average percentage
of deaths of infants and young children is present, and which brings
down the number of the survivors.
Dr. Alice Hamilton, in "The Bulletin of the American Academy of
Medicine," for May, 1910, reports that she has investigated the families
of 1,600 wage workers, and found the following death rate per 1,000
birth among them, viz.:
Families of 4 children and less 118 deaths per 1,000 births
Families of 6 children 267 deaths per 1,000 births
Families of 7 children 280 deaths per 1,000 births
Families of 8 children 291 deaths per 1,000 births
Families of 9 children or more 303 deaths per 1,000 births
Dr. Hamilton sums up her investigation as follows:
"OUR STUDY OF THE POORER WORKING CLASS SHOWS THAT CHILD MORTALITY
INCREASES PROPORTIONATELY AS THE NUMBER OF CHILDREN INCREASE, UNTIL WE
HAVE A DEATH RATE IN FAMILIES OF 8 CHILDREN AND OVER WHICH IS TWO AND A
HALF TIMES AS GREAT AS THAT IN FAMILIES OF 4 CHILDREN AND OVER."
The facts above mentioned, and other facts of the same nature which will
be disclosed in the progress of our consideration of the matter in the
present book, have evidently been overlooked, deliberately or otherwise,
by the fanatics in this country and in Europe who have been preaching to
the people that a falling birth-rate means a decaying nation. Careful
students of sociology now dismiss altogether the statement so often
made that a falling birth-rate means "an old and decaying community."
The Germans for years have contemptuously been making this remark about
France, but today they have been forced to recognize an unexpected
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