Friday, June 17, 2016

If Young People Are Taught Prompt Obedience, Might This Reduce Murder Rate in U.S.? 1916

“Obedience and Team Work,” from the Hopkinsville Kentuckian, July 15, 1916

Only in a few American homes is prompt obedience required. Only to a limited degree is the habit of prompt obedience cultivated in the school. The boys have done something to cultivate the spirit of team work by their voluntary athletics, but only a minority get this training. Organized industry does something to compel team work, but not much to inspire it. Corporations and labor unions do something to develop it, but it is team work for a class, not for the community. It is not easy to conceive of anything which would do more to develop these two needed virtues—prompt obedience and team work—than universal military service. General Wood tells us that in this country the murder rate is 124 per million; in Switzerland it is 12 per million. What is the cause of this difference? One cause is the American vice of self will. What is the remedy for this defect? One valuable remedy would be the soldier’s habit of respect for authority and of regard for the comrade at his side

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