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June 24, 1920 - Image 3

Resource type:
The Wolverine, 1920-06-24

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with life and shall be all aglow with
a passion for service. The great war
SUUthrough which we have just lived has
thrown doubt upon every answer to
the permanent problems of organized
society. You must face this universal
e mind challenge. Everything is questioned.
sidered All of the ordinary ideas and beliefs of
not an man are being re-examined, re-formu-
i think- lated or abandoned. A deep tone of
eaning disrespect runs all through American
realizes life. The home, the courts, the ballot
r self- box, the present theories of property
ht and rights are all regarded by large groups
r, the of people as temporary solutions of
under- fundamental issues. In this atmosphere
ongeal, you must breathe and work and keep
cs and vital. No generation ever faced such
here is gigantic, momentous problems as you
ed. He face. With no thought of solving them
t that or even of casting any light upon their
element complications and entanglements, but
He pos- for the purpose of burning into your
r sensi- very souls the magnitude of your re-
nform- sponsibilities, there should be men-
yearn- tioned here by way of illustration, cer-
under- tain primary questions which you must
y. He answer.
ig new Must Face Issues

impressed by a
ult. In a word,
om the =artistic


ientist. He
will evince
resh'ness in
s in strategy
the victory.
a of coura-

The issues of an industrial democ-
racy must be, faced more clearly and
more sharply with every passing day.
Here is undoubtedly the paramount
domestic problem of America. It is
not merely a question of wages and
hours. It runs down into the very
foundations of society. It asks whether
la'bor shall be regarded as a commo-
dity or whether the worker shall have
some share in the organization and
conduct of the shop. The whole prob-
lem of "representation in industry," of
living wages, of standards of living, of
American economic prosperity and
financial stability are involved here.
Mr. Albert Mansbridge in the August,
1919, Atlantic, wisely and solemnly
said: "No community can afford to
let the powerful influences of educa-
tion and labor develop otherwise than
in conscious co-operation."'
To what extent the government shall
go in the exercise of its functions is a

Surely- no true person can be too
alive to do his share in meeting such
tasks. We face not only the attractive-
ness but the necessity of being thor-
oughly, incessantly alive.
Attempt to Define Easy
. It is easy enough to attempt a defini-
tion of being alive; it degenerates al-
most into "platitudinous flapdoodle" in
these days to point out the necessity
arising out of world problems for
every person to do his share; the real
issue comes when we discuss methods.
How sholl one play his part in this
game? Curiously enough as one sets
out to fill his place he will discover
sooner or later that "self" is the most
troublesome factor with which he has
to deal. No one with intelligence can
shout today the old doctrine df exces-
sive individualism,-a doctrine which
preached personal success and indi-
vidual triumph so vigorously a genera-
tion ago that we see its direful effects
written in capital letters all over
American political and business life.
Nor will the doctrine of "live" and
"let live" be adequate for our huge'
responsibilities today.
It will not do to say to yourself, "I
will make the most of myself and let
everybody do likewise." It isn't a
sougd doctrine. If you swallow it
whole you will have intellectual indi-
gestion. Even so, Germany would have
done well in 1914 to have stooped to
this level rather than to follow the
policy she did. Moreover we cannot
with discrimination advocate the
absurd doctrine of complete celf-
abnegation. To be absorbed as a drop
of water in the ocean carries no thrill
to American youth. Weak, . supine
acquiescence does not appeal to
healthy youngsters. Negative, color-
less humility and meekness do not grip
the imagination. Surely there must be
some other method for keping self at
its best. We all agree that we want
to get ourselves out of the center of
the universe but we insist upon posses-
sing genuine self-respect, vigorous ini-
tiative and undaunted courage.
Study Capacities
The only method which recognizes
fully both sids of thje problem re-
quires one to have a cause. In effet
it says: study your desires, capacities
and achievements. See what you have
and what you can do. Likewise study
the world. Learn what its real needs
are. See what must be done for hu-
manity. Then match the two things.
Take all that you have and place it at
the disposal of some worthy cause, out-
side of and beyond your own persona,
This is the method of the soldier. It
was the ideal of the Pilgrim fathers.
It has been the plan of all great indi-
viduals, groups and nations. They
identify themselves with some noble
undertaking. As Carlyle wisely said:
"For all human things do require to
have an ideal in them, to have some
soul in them."
Self Finds Proper Place
Any man who really identifies him-
self with a cause soon learns the great
secret of life. Self now finds its proper
place. Genuine, natural, positive hu-
mility is born. Conceit, self-pride,
exaltation of self-all these are im-
possible. Yet there is here no weak,
dawdling, supine, sentimentality about
self-sacrifice and service. Rather there
is amazing self-effacement in devotion
to great ends. Marvelous poise, con-
scious power, innate dignity, unquali-
fled self-respect all arise by virtue of
the great cause he serves.
Just as the traffic 'policeman, the
soldier, the governor of the state or
the President of the nation are re-
spected ot for themselves-individually
but because of the communities they

respect, so the individual finds his real
effectiveness in his cause not in him-
self. Ruskin formulated this mighty
truth in this paragraph: "Arnolfo
knows that he can build a good dome
at Floyence; Albert Durer writes calm-
ly to one who has found fault with his
vork, 'It cannot be done better'; Sir
Isaac Newton knows that he has
worked ont a problem or two .that
would have puzzled anybody else; only
they do not expect their fellow-men
therefore to fall down and worship
them. They have a curious undersense
of powerlessness, feeling that the
power is not in them but through
th'em." 1.,
Must Learn Final Law
As paradoxically as it may soundl
therefore we must all sooner or later
come to realize that the path of life
is the path of death. This is the final
law. We must lose our lives to find
them-lose them in a great cause. Ex-
cept a grain of wheat fall into the
ground and die it abideth by itself
alone but if it die it bringeth forth
much fruit. Call it what yot please-
unselfishness, being thoroughly social-
ized, entering into' the life of mankind,
loyalty, old-fashioned unselfishness-
thi's is what being alive demands. Sir
Auckland Geddes was quite right when
he affirmed that "a man does not live
by or for bread alone. If he does he is
not worth keeping alive." Somehow,
by experiences bitter or sweet, through
success and failure, through joys and
sorrows, you Will be forced back to
the truth that "No man liveth unto
himself," that life is worth living just
in proportion as the welfare of man-
kind in some form becomes your first
High Hope Expressed
No higher hope can be expressed for
each one of 'you today than that as the
years come and go you may lay hold
on life. Emerson once said that "the
one thing of value in the world is an
active soul-this every man is entitled
to,-this every man has within him,
although in almost all men obstructed
and as yet unborn." May the obstruc-
tions be torn away and the splendidly
noble life within each one of you grad-
ually be born. The University of Mich-
igan confidently expects each one of
you to be thoroughly alive, to hit hard
at every form of injustice and to forget
himself in the exacting service of this
American democracy.

Minneapolis, June 24.-Vernon M.
Williams, center on the 1919 Univer-
sity of Minncsota football eleven, has
been elected president of the Univer-
sity Athletic Board of Control. In the
student poll, Williams received 945
votes as against the 572 given Neal G.
Arntson, another football star.
Australia Enters 14 in Olympies
Melbourne, Australia, June 24.-The
federal government has subscribed a
thousand pounds to the Olympic team.
It is definitely decided to send four-
teen Australian representatives.
Germans Return Yacht Cup to England
London, June 24.-The trustees of
enemy property in Berlin have notified
Gerald Watson, th'e secretary of the
713 E. University Avenue
develops films,
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ships. Life
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ais n

, de- problem upon which you will be re-
the "quired to vote throughout your lives.
ither Do we still believe in individual initia-
with tive? Or do we believe in any case in
be, expanding governmental activities?
s/ of That this issue is acute in certain re-
.able gions of our country goes without say-
tive, ing. We believe ifi the postoffice and
hich in public education, we assumed the
true wisdom of the government taking over
ship during the war the railroads, the tele-
man phones and telegraphs, but how far
the now shall these processes go? Shall"
eigh- the individual states go into the in-
This surance business, erect packing houses,
uals, own elevators and engage in otherl
His- basic industries? How far shall thel
this government be asked to go? There'
hips may be solemfi elements of truth in
the the jest that although Germany once
ns of possessed the more efficient form of,
st is government, that Americans prefer the
less competent form.
International System Important


It is easy to find one of our sto
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Our relations
.nd our part in
is confirmation
t life at its be
p Alive
eans keeping a
gnation and d
graduates, are
here upon on
roblems of thou
s the naturec

e of

t do? As paradoxical as it may
r, the only way to keep alive is
ect a task which ycu can never
perform. For example, the ef-
to become rich, or famous, or
d aregenuine goals. They always
efore you larger possibilities of
ement. "We only live by escap-
e death of attainment." The man
its down and says, "Now I have
it," is dead but does not know it.
e alive you simply must keep
You' must grow.
he task of berng alive is so ex-
, some one may seize the other
of the dilemma anti ask: Why is
essary to be so much alive? Why
ist exist or to make it more re-
ible, Why not lead a normal,
quiet life without all this effort
:ellence and this desire for full-
>f life? It must be admitted that
ect multitudes of people do this
thing. Our line of thought is
upon the assumption that a uni-
y man or woman readily grants
to whomsoever much is given, of
hall much be required." So we
t hesitate to claim one presuppo-
for our thought today. We as-
that every real man and true
n here would turn in disdain
any contemplated plan of life
did not recognize that he or she
to the world, under normal cir-
ances, the very fullest and best
which he is capable.
Conditions Abnormal.
outstanding fact, however, is
not one of you is to live under
l circumstances. The absolute
sity of being alive today rests
the abnormal world situation
your generation faces. Condi-
within and without the nation

The international situation cannot
be ignored. League or no league,
American citizens will be voting regu-
larly on these issues. One needs only
to read John Maynard Keynes on the
Economic Con'sequences of the Peace,
or Mr. Frank Vanderlip's book entitled
"What Happened to Europe,' to appre-
ciate the overwhelming, momentous
difficulties which confront the world
and therefore every intelligent Ameri-
can citizen. The situation can scarcely
be exaggerated. Whether we speak of
financial insolvency, industrial disor-
ganization, transportation difficulties,
lack of food supplies or general dis-
ruption of life the picture is equally
baffling and dark.

f , s


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