Sunday, June 29, 2014


You know, it seems to me the world is growing better, more sane. When, as a boy, I worked in a factory I remember almost every evening after work there would be a fight outside the shop. A couple of fellows with bare fists would go to it, while the crowd of workmen egged them on.

Often these fights lasted an hour or more, and sometimes they were continued like the old-time serial movie picture. If they could not finish the argument in one night, they would go out to the vacant lot the next and start all over. Now that seemed to be the method they had of finding out who was right in an argument.

Nations still use this method. They have a war, and the one that kills most men and starves most women and children wins- and that one is supposed to be right- the other one, wrong.

 I heard a very interesting story about a couple of Chinese. A traveler in Shanghai one day saw two coolies engaged in a heated argument. A big crowd was gathered about, just like the crowds that used to watch the fist fights out in the vacant lot back of the shop. The two Chinese were waving their arms, shaking their fists and stamping their feet, all the time apparently hurling at each other the bitterest epithets their Mongolian brains could devise. But not a blow was struck.

The traveler was surprised at their actions and when he inquired what the trouble was, he was told by one of the bystanders that the two coolies were "fighting." "Fighting?" he asked in astonishment. "What kind of a fight do you call that? They prance around and talk fast and make faces, but not a blow is struck." "That is right," replied the bystander, "the man who strikes first is beaten, because thereby he confesses he has run out of ideas."

And that seems to me to be one of the reasons for men and nations fighting- they run out of ideas.

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