Page:Speeches And Writings MKGandhi.djvu/490

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400 EARLIER INDIAN SPEECHES

4,649,663 victims. If so many had died fighting on the battlefield during the war that is at present devastating Europe, we would have covered ourselves with glory and lovers of Swaraj would need no further argument in support of their cause. As it is, 4,639,663 have died a lingering death unmourned and their dying has brought us nothing but discredit. A distinguished Englishman said the other day that Englishmen did all the thinking for us whilst we sat supine. He added that most Englishmen basing their opinions on their English experience presented im- possible or costly remedies for the evils they investi- gated. There is much truth in the above statement. In other countries reformers have successfully grappled with epidemics. Here Englishmen have tried and fail- ed. They have thought along western lines ignoring the vast differences, climatic and other, between Europe and India. Our doctors and physicians have practically done nothing. I am sure that half-a-dozen medical men of the front rank dedicating their lives to the work of eradicating the triple curse would succeed where Englishmen have failed. I venture to suggest that the way lies not through finding out cures but through finding or rather applying preventive methods, I prefer to use the participle ' applying ' for I have it on the aforementioned authority that to drive out plague (and I add cholera and malaria) is absurdly simple. There is no conflict of opinion as to the pre- ventive methods. We simply do not apply them. We have made up our minds that the masses will not adopt them. There could be no greater calumny uttered against them. If we would but stoop to conquer, they can be easily conquered. The truth is -that we

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