THE rapidity with which the eugenic idea has spread is little short of wonderful, and its value can not be overestimated. However, this value has been not only and not chiefly for what it has claimed for heredity, but for the attention it has turned towards sanitation and hygiene.
This is a time of great social unrest and any panacea which offers to solve our problems is eagerly embraced. Eugenics has volunteered for the service, which accounts, in part, for its rapid spread. A second reason is its simplicity. Only one principle is required to dispose of all problems. In this connection Dr. C. A. L. Reed says:
It is the object of this paper to show that even if a perfect eugenic system were in vogue, practically every social problem which we are now trying to solve would still remain, and I wish also to urge that in spite of what good it may have done, it has also done a very great harm in diverting attention from the really fundamental problems which underlie the question of race improvement.
The cocksureness of the eugenist is illustrated by the following quotation from Alexander Graham Bell:
In similar strain, but more comprehensive and more confident, we find Davenport saying in a magazine article:
Let me quote further from Davenport's book, "Heredity in Relation to Eugenics."
- Lancet-Clinic, January 3, 1914.
- Journal of Heredity, January, 1914, Pl. 1.
- C. B. Davenport, Pop. Sci. Mo.
- P. 1.