2. That he (the objector) is prepared with some other plan which will as effectually accomplish the end it contemplates.
Let me consider the second reason first. If it be that you have some plan that promises more directly to accomplish the deliverance of these multitudes than mine, I implore you at once to bring it out. Let it see the light of day. Let us not only hear your theory, but see the evidences which prove its practical character and assure its success. If your plan will bear investigation, I shall then consider you to be relieved from the obligation to assist me--nay, if after full consideration of your plan I find it better than mine, I will give up mine, turn to, and help you with all my might. But if you have nothing to offer, I demand your help in the name of those whose cause I plead.
Now, then, for your first objection, which I suppose can be expressed in one word--"impossible." This, if well founded, is equally fatal to my proposals. But, in reply, I may say--How do you know? Have you inquired? I will assume that you have read the book, and duly considered it. Surely you would not dismiss so important a theme without some thought. And though my arguments may not have sufficient weight to carry conviction, you must admit them to be of sufficient importance to warrant investigation. Will you therefore come and see for yourself what has been done already, or, rather, what we are doing to-day. Failing this, will you send someone capable of judging on your behalf. I do not care very much whom you send. It is true the things of the Spirit are spiritually discerned, but the things of humanity any man can judge, whether saint or sinner, if he only possess average intelligence and ordinary bowels of compassion.
I should, however, if I had a choice, prefer an investigator who has some practical knowledge of social economics, and much more should I be pleased if he had spent some of his own time and a little of his own money in trying to do the work himself. After such investigation I am confident there could be only one result.
There is one more plea I have to offer to those who might seek to excuse themselves from rendering any financial assistance to the Scheme. Is it not worthy at least of being tried as an experiment? Tens of thousands of pounds are yearly spent in "trying" for minerals, boring for coals, sinking for water, and I believe there are those who think it worth while, at an expenditure of hundreds of thousands of pounds, to experiment in order to test the possibility of making a tunnel under the sea between this country and France. Should these adventurers fail in their varied operations, they have, at least, the satisfaction of knowing, though hundreds of thousands of pounds have been expended, that they have not been wasted, and they will not complain; because they have at least attempted the accomplishment of that which they felt ought to be done; and it must be better to attempt a duty, though we fail, than never to attempt it at all. In this book we do think we have presented a sufficient reason to justify the expenditure of the money and effort involved in the making of this experiment. And though the effort should not terminate in the grand success which I so confidently predict, and which we all must so ardently desire, still there is bound to be, not only the satisfaction of having attempted some sort of deliverance for these wretched people, but certain results which will amply repay every farthing expended in the experiment.
I am now sixty-one years of age. The last eighteen months, during which the continual partner of all my activities for now nearly forty years has laid in the arms of unspeakable suffering, has added more than many many former ones, to the exhaustion of my term of service. I feel already something of the pressure which led the dying Emperor of Germany to say, "I have no time to be weary." If I am to see the accomplishment in any considerable degree of these life-long hopes, I must be enabled to embark up on the enterprise without delay, and with the world-wide burden constantly upon me in connection with the universal mission of our Army I cannot be expected to struggle in this matter alone.
But I trust that the upper and middle classes are at last being awakened out of their long slumber with regard to the permanent improvement of the lot of those who have hitherto been regarded as being for ever abandoned and hopeless. Shame indeed upon England if, with the example presented to us nowadays by the Emperor and Government of Germany, we simply shrug our shoulders, and pass on again to our business or our pleasure leaving these wretched multitudes in the gutters where they have lain so long. No, no, no; time is short. Let us arise in the name of God and humanity, and wipe away the sad stigma from the British banner that our horses are better treated than our labourers.
It will be seen that this Scheme contains many branches. It is probable that some of my readers may not be able to endorse the plan as a whole, while heartily approving of some of its features and to the support of what they do not heartily approve they may not be willing to subscribe. Where this is so, we shall be glad for them to assist us in carrying out those portions of the undertaking which more especially command their sympathy and commend themselves to their judgment. For instance, one man may believe in the Over-Sea Colony, but feel no interest in the Inebriates' Home; another, who may not care for emigration, may desire to furnish a Factory or Rescue Home; a third may wish to give us an estate, assist in the Food and Shelter work, or the extension of the Slum Brigade. Now, although I regard the Scheme as one and indivisible--from which you cannot take away any portion without impairing the prospect of the whole--it is quite practicable to administer the money subscribed so that the wishes of each donor may be carried out. Subscriptions may, therefore, be sent in for the general fund of the Social Scheme, or they can be devoted to any of the following distinct funds: --
gangway above which lowered a green and rotting wooden
I took office, reducing the costs of mortgages, car payments,
Knox to paint our portraits: we liked Knoxs lifelike style,
and medals from each of the service branches. They gave
The wide heavens about her seemed to promise a greater
the traditional farewell tribute from the armed forces,