California And The Californians By David Starr Jordan

 -  No finer type of man can be
found in the world than the sober Californian; and yet no coast is - Page 11
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No Finer Type Of Man Can Be Found In The World Than The Sober Californian; And Yet No Coast Is Strewn With Wrecks More Pitiful.

There are some advantages in the absence of a compelling force of public opinion.

One of them is found in the strong self-reliance of men and women who have made and enforced their own moral standards. With very many men, life in California brings a decided strengthening of the moral fibre. They must reconsider, justify, and fight for their standards of action; and by so doing they become masters of themselves. With men of weak nature the result is not so encouraging. The disadvantage is shown in lax business methods, official carelessness and corruption, the widespread corrosion of vulgar vices, and the general lack of pride in their work shown by artisans and craftsmen.

In short, California is a man's land, with male standards of action - a land where one must give and take, stand and fall, as a man. With the growth of woman's realm of homes and houses, this will slowly change. It is changing now, year by year, for good and ill; and soon California will have a public opinion. Her sons will learn to fear "the rod behind the looking-glass," and to shun evil not only because it is vile, but because it is improper.

Contact with the facts of nature has taught the Californian something of importance. To have elbow-room is to touch nature at more angles; and whenever she is touched she is an insistent teacher.

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