Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 61.djvu/235

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229
RACE DIFFERENCES.

a well-trained dog in a circus, but never as a man of the same capabilities as a white man.

Another reason for the mean opinion in which the Filipinos have been held by the whites is found in the circumstance that in the tropics all the servants are colored. They have the defects of their social class and of servants everywhere. Now when a German housewife complains of her servants she does not extend their bad qualities to the whole German nation, but this is done unblushingly by Europeans who live in the tropics, and they never, apparently, feel any compunctions, but sleep the sleep of the just, undisturbed by conscience.

The merchants also have contributed to the unfavorable judgment of the Filipinos. Europeans come to the tropics in order to get rich as soon as possible, which can only be done by buying from the natives at astoundingly low rates. The latter, however, do not regard this proceeding as a really commercial one, but they believe that the whites are trying to cheat them, and they govern themselves accordingly by trying, on their side, to overreach the whites, while their dealings with one another are far more honorable. Consequently the Europeans call the natives liars and cheats while it never occurs to them that their own exploiting of the ignorance of the natives is a conscienceless proceeding, or rather they believe that, as whites, they are morally justified in dealing immorally with the natives, because the latter are colored.

Dr. Rizal finally came to think that he need no longer wonder at the prejudices of the whites against his people after he saw in Europe what unjustifiable prejudices European nations entertain against one another. He himself was always benevolent and moderate in his judgment of foreign peoples. His active and keen mind, his personal amiability, his politeness and manner as a man of the world, and his good and noble heart gained him friends everywhere, and therefore the tragic death of this intellectually distinguished and amiable man aroused general concern.

Rizal was an artist of delicate perceptions, a draughtsman and sculptor, as well as a scholar and ethnologist. Professor Blumentritt possesses three statues made by him of terra cotta, which might aptly serve as symbols of his life. One represents Prometheus bound; the second represents the victory of death over life, and this scene is imagined with peculiar originality; a skeleton in a monk's cowl bears in its arms the inanimate body of a young maiden. The third shows us a female form standing upon a death's head and holding a torch in her high uplifted hands. This is the triumph of knowledge, of the soul, over death.

Rizal, concludes Professor Blumentritt, was undoubtedly the most distinguished man not only of his own people but of the Malay race in general. His memory will never die in his fatherland. He never was an enemy of Spain.