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industrious man that an honest man bears to a generous one. The honest man pays what is due. That is all his duty-as he understands it--demands. If he did less he would be a rogue. But the generous man only pays what is claimed-he gives what is wanted.
Again, suppose one man to be left to support himself. Though he worked twenty hours a day to get food or luxuries for himself, you would not call that laudable. Because the motive is purely a selfish one, and all the labor is for his own gratification. But this is a form of industry much belauded by our pastors and masters. This lonely selfish glutton is a man made of the stuff of which very many British heroes' have been made. He is painfully like the men held up to us as examples to copy and as idols to worship. He is the kind of man who gets on.” Return again to our colony. The land is the people's.
The fixed working hours are ten a day; but the fields are not enough tilled and the harvests are still poor. Now suppose some man seeing this goes out and works five hours extra daily for the common good, he is an industrious man. He is made of the stuff of which real heroes are spun. Or suppose he sees that pick and spade and muscle and bone are overmatched in the struggle to win bread from the obstinate soil, and seeing this gives all his thought and time, sacrifices all his pleasures and desires, to the one task of designing and constructing a plow or other engine to relieve and feed the weary and famished people --well, I say, that is an industrious man; that is a noble man. His work is “honest toil;" he is a hero.
Or suppose another case--the case of a man who loves work for its own sake. Here is an artist, say, or a musician. He loves art or music. He labors at his chosen art with all the power he has, with all the thought, and love, and courage, and patience of his nature. With a devotion that no rebuff can shake, with an affection that no triumph can weaken, he stands at his easel or sits at his piano content laboriously and obscurely to create beautiful things for their own sake. Then, I say, that man is an industrious man. He is a man most valuable to his fellow-creatures, but he is not so exalted a hero as the man described just now.
There is a great difference between work and toil, between task work and work of choice; and this difference--paplable as it is to a man like me, who has tried both forms of labor—is too often lost sight of by moralists who make it their business to preach to the masses.
Between the navvy, wheeling interminable barrows of clay over endless miles of planks at a fixed pittance and the strug. giing author or painter living on dry bread and dreams in a garret there is this immense difference, that whereas the navvy's work is a dull, monotonous, uninteresting task, with no motive but that of winning an animal subsistence, no exercise except for the physical powers, and no hope beyond a doubtful promotion to the post of gauger, the work of the painter or the writer, howsoever poor and obscure he be, is a labor of love; a labor that is in itself a pleasure, a recreation, and an education. A work that employs and trains the highest faculties; that inspires the heart and brain with the brightest hopes; that holds out to the poorest and most insignificant of its drudges at least a chance, a little promise, however remote, of the highest honors · and the most magnificent rewards.
It is all very well for the business man, the parson, the author, the engineer, the member of parliament, to abuse the workman as idle, thriftless, and drunken; but let us do the workman justice. Let us remember that his work is neither exciting, pleasing, ennobling, nor remunerative. Often I have heard professional men say, “Talk about the working classes ! what do they know of work? They never work as hard as I do. They have not the worry and strain that mental work involves. I am a manufacturer or a doctor or a lawyer-my work is never done." All this is true. The doctor's work or the author's work is never done. But remember that he loves it so much that he would not wish ever done. He is so wrapped up in it, so wedded to it, that if it were done, if he were obliged to take off the harness and to go to grass in the prime of life, he would actually break his heart.
It is very nice for professional men to boast of their industry and love of work. They are doing the work of their choice. But take them away from the theater, or the desk, the pulpit, or the quarter-deck, and set them to carrying bricks up a ladder, stitching slop clothing, or scribbling out invoices, and see how they will enjoy that, and how industrious they will be.
It is easy to tell a workman to be industrious and contented in that walk of life to which Providence has called him. But it would be neither easy nor pleasant to take his place and show him how it should be done; and I tell you frankly I believe that if Providence called a prime minister or a bishop to dig coals or puddle iron, Providence would have to use a long trumpet or the gentlemen would not hear.
Ask any man of taste and sense which he would prefer--a pitcher with a stencil pattern printed on it, a bad copy multiplied a thousand times of some original design, or the same pitcher molded in a form peculiar to itself, and ornamented with the original design itself hand-painted, and not repeated on .any other piece of pottery extant. He will tell you he prefers the original work. Now, ask any man of taste and sense whether he would rather
tend a machine which should turn out pitchers by the thousand, all of one form and color, or himself turn and mold the clay upon the wheel and under his own hand. Ask any man who knows men and life and understands human nature and human work, whether a number of men or women would rather stamp the same design ten thousand times upon a piece of plaster, or set to work with gouge and chisel and carve out leaves and flowers to their own fancy and design.
In proportion as you can make men's work artistic will it become pleasant and elevating and productive of contentment. In proportion as the work becomes more pleasing, more interesting and more noble, will the people grow to love it; and the more the people come to love their work, the more industrious and contented will they be. That is one of the practical values of art.
But, again, there is a negative as well as a positive value in art. If a man's work is irksome, brutish, cheerless, and without hope or interest, the man grows jaded and dissatisfied. Getting no hope, no variety, no joy nor excitement out of the labor of his hands and brain, he seeks for change and relaxation elsewhere. He must have change and rest and pleasure. The duller and harder his task, the more his thirst for excitement and for ease. Just think of these facts. Remember that by 'making a man a drudge, you make him contract a debt to nature; and nature will be paid. If you will or must have drudges, you must and shall provide them an antidote to the bane, or they must and will provide the antidote themselves. You see that, do you not? Well, there are the drudges drudging all around you. 'Have you provided them abundance of pure and innocent recreation for their leisure and refreshment? You have not. But you grant a great many pnblic-house licenses, I notice. You set them an example on the stock exchange and in the countinghouse and on the racecourse which they may follow. And the result?
ENVIRONMENT. A civilized people desires that they who produce its wealth should be intelligent, honest, thrifty, far-seeing, prudent, and, to the fullest extent possible, cultivated and well-mannered. It is impossible that these advantages should be secured, and the economies which they invariably effect secured with them, unless the workman is adequately remunerated for his labor, and is encouraged to hope.- Thorold Rogers.
In Sicily the workers are as temperate as dogs; and they are treated like dogs.- T ne Clarion.
Some sell their lives for bread;
Some sell their souls for gold;
Some seek the workhouse mold.
Such is proud England's sway,
Whero wealth may work its will;
White souls are cheaper still.–Fantasias. By nature we nearly resemble one another; condition separates us very far.-Confucius.
Let us now consider how far drunkenness is responsible for the poverty of the masses. First of all, let me say a few svords on drink and drinking. It would be a mistake to suppose that the man who is oftenest drunk is the heaviest drinker. Many a highly-respectable middle-class gentleman spends more money on drink in one day than a laborer earns in a week, yet withal is accounted a steady man. I have seen a journalist, and one very severe upon the vices of the poor, drink eight shillings' worth of whisky and soda in an evening, and do his work correctly. I have known a sailor to sit up all night playing at cards, and consume about a pint of rum and a gallon of stout in the process, and then go out at eight in the morning and score nine consecutive bull's-eyes at 200 yards. But the average poor laborer of the slums would be mad on a quarter of the liquor. Why?
There are three principal reasons: 1. The laborer is often in a low state of health. 2. The laborer does not drink with any caution or method. 3. The laborer does not get pure liquor.
Now I must in justice say for the poor that they have great excuse for drinking, and that they are often blamed for being drunk when they are simply poisoned.
Drunkenness is a disease. It is just as much a disease as typhus fever or cholera, and often arises from very similar causes. Any medical man will tell you that the craving for alcoholic stimulants is frequently found among men whose nervous system is low.
But there are, I think, three chief causes of drunkenness. A man may crave for drink when his system is out of order. And this may result, and generally does result, from overwork, from worry, from dullness of life, inducing depression, from lack of rest, or from living or working amid unhealthy surr
irroundings. Hence you will find many professional men give way to drink from sheer mental over-strain, and you will find many dwellers in the slums give way to drink from loss of sleep, from over-work, from illhealth, or from the effects of foul air.
Or a man may become a drunkard from the habit of taking drink. Doubtless there are many thousands of men working in the coal mines, or ironworks, or as coal dischargers, or as wool staplers, or masons, or chemical laborers, who from the intense heat, or severe exertion, or choking dust, among which they labor, are compelled to drink freely, and so acquire the morbid taste for liquor.
Oi a man may lead a dull and cheerless life, and live amid squalid and gloomy surroundings, and so may contract the habit of going to the publie-house for company and change and for excitement, and so may acquire the habit of drinking by those
Or a man may have inherited the disease from drunken parents; parents who acquired it from one of the causes above named.
Now, Mr. Smith, you know that many of the poor work at unhealthy trades and live in unhealthy places; and you know that they work too hard and too long, and that their lives are dull and anxious, and I ask you is it surprising that such people take to drink? Moreover, those purists who bear so hardly upon the workers for this fault have seldom a word to say against the met who drive them to drink. But the real culprits, the people actually responsible for nearly all the drunkenness of the poor, are the grasping employers, the polluters of the rivers and the air, the jerry builders, the slum-lords, and the detestable knaves who grow rich by the sale of poisoned and adulterated liquor.
Give the people healthy homes, human lives, due leisure and amusement, and pure meat and drink, and drunkenness will soon disappear. While there are slums, while men have no pure pleasure, while they are overworked, and untaught, and while the wealthy brewer can open his poison dens at every street corner, it will be useless to preach temperance. The late Dean of Manchester spoke like a man of sense when he said that if he lived in the slums he too would take to drink.
Do you doubt me when I say that it is the surroundings that make the vices of the people ?
Put a number of well-disposed people into bad surroundings and compel them to stop there. In a century you will have the kind of people now to be found in the slums. Take, now, a lot of people from the slums and put them in a new country where they must work to live, where they can live by work, where fresh air and freedom and hope can come to them, and in a generation you will have a prosperous and creditable colony. Do you not know this to be true? Has it not happened both ways? Do not Dr. Barnardo's outcast children turn out well? Then what is the reason? Men are made by their environment.
It has been said that dirt is matter in the wrong place.. I often think that ne'er-do-wells are examples of energy in the wrong place. Emerson says, “There is no moral deformity but is a good passion out of place.” Some natures cannot thrive without a great deal of excitement. They have in them such desire of activity, such hunger for adventure, that they are incapable of settling down to the dull, humdrum life of British respectability and profit-making. Sir Walter Raleigh was a bold explorer and