Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 58.djvu/556

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To the Editor: I am a lady scientist, and I suppose you will think it very rude in me to intrude what I think into the grand affairs of a great scientific magazine. But I really must say to you that it is very shameful of you to encourage Mr. Starr Jordan to indulge his fiendish delight in depreciating feminine science—Karyokinesis. I feel his attack bitterly, for after passing an examination—equal to that described by Monsieur Arago in his Autobiography, during which a bright young man of more than usual assurance even for a Frenchman was so put upon by old Mr. Monge, the mathematician, that he fainted and had to be carried out past Mr. Arago and the other gentlemen in the antechamber on a shutter—in astronomy, geology, chemistry, physics, meteorology both in the past perfect and future indicative, mathematics and sociology, I obtained my present position as copyist at $480 per annum in the Direction of Science, Division of Karyokinesis.

I do not believe at all in this ex-post facto theory of abolishing time and space, which is unconstitutional, anyhow, because it is forbidden by the Declaration of Independence and is imperialism. Now, I am going to take Mr. Starr Jordan up, word for word, and show that he is simply ridiculous.

Telepathy is a pure science. It is pure because it was a woman who invented it. No man could ever have had the sense to get up such a science. A man's intellect is fatally defective. You positively can not make it comprehend that if everybody stops doing drudgery because the world is an oyster, things will go on just the same, if not better. I know there are exceptions, but such exceptional men are really, speaking psychologically, women, and may for convenience of reference be called Untermenschen; and probably Mr. Alexander Dumas, fils, was describing one of these gifted minds in his charming moral story where Count Petit Lavellère de Château-Bourbon capers about the sleeping-apartment of Madame Revocation de la Tour de Nesle on all fours like a spaniel, with her real point-lace handkerchief in his mouth.

Compare the delicate suggestiveness of this beautiful picture with the coarse vulgarity of a vile Scot's lord at a card party when his partner, the Viscountess Smith, played the wrong card. "You old bitch," roared the noble(!) lord, "what did you play that card for?" And then, recalled to his environment by the look of astonishment on her ladyship's face, he blurted out: "Your pardon's begged, mum. I thought I was speaking to me wife," just as though that poor woman was his 'chum.'

Of course, at this stage of scientific expansion it is impossible to rear every man as an Untermensch, as we should be able to rear him were we in possession of the universities, and like he is reared in the seraglio by the eunuchs and the ladies of the harem so quaintly pictured by Lord Byron, a man of strong Turkish characteristics, in his sweet tale of Don Juan. When, however, advancing civilization has discredited the vague and unsatisfactory principle of evolution or the survival of the fittest or force science for the immediate and visible principle of Karyokinesis, or egg science, which depends on hatching and not on principle, however, then the strange notion that the meaning of childhood is to give time to live through the history of the race will be discarded, and it will be openly taught that a child goes