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October 24, 1908


JAMA. 1908;LI(17):1430. doi:10.1001/jama.1908.02540170046008

One of the dangers to which the savage recipients of the benefits of civilization are subject is that of being left unprotected against themselves and the evils of civilization. The introduction of civilization among an aboriginal race is usually an iconoclastic procedure. In the nature of things, the old native gods and customs arc broken before the "reclaimed" savage is able to comprehend the newer order. It is impossible to take a race, not even one generation removed from savagery, and by introducing Christianity and civilization put that race on a parity with those whose struggle toward their present state has consumed centuries of time and immeasurable effort. Yet, unfortunately, that is what is attempted too often by the nation which would shoulder the "white man's burden." Such attempts not only fail to redound to the credit of those who have attempted to civilize by hot-house methods, but they spell

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