sentence in his otherwise masterful paper upon "State Socialism and Anarchism." If I am wrong, I stand open to conviction. It is this: "They [Anarchists] look forward to a time … when the children born of these relations shall belong exclusively to the mothers until old enough to belong to themselves."
Now, that looks to me like an authoritarian statement that is in opposition to theoretical Anarchy, and also to nature. What is the matter with leaving the question of the control of those children to their two parents, to be settled between them,—allowing them to decide whether both, or only one, and which one, shall have control?
I may be wrong, but it seems to me extremely un-Anarchistic to thus bring up an extraneous, authoritarian, moral obligation, and use it to stifle an instinct which nature is doing her best to develop.
I would like to know whether the editor of Liberty momentarily forgot his creed that we must follow our natural desires, or if I have misunderstood his statement, or misapplied my own Anarchy.
Paternal love of offspring is, with a few exceptions, a comparatively late development in the evolution of the animal world, so late that there are tribes of the order of man, and individuals even among civilized nations, in whom it is not found. But the fact that it is a late development shows that it is going to develop still more. And under the eased economical conditions which Anarchy hopes to bring about, it would burst forth with still greater power. Is it wise to attempt to stifle that feeling—as it would be stifled—by the sweeping statement that its object should belong to some one else? Maternal love of offspring beautifies the woman's character, broadens and enriches her intellect. And as far as I have observed, paternal feeling, if it is listened to, indulged, and developed, has an equally good, though not just the same, effect upon the man's mind. Should he be deprived of all this good by having swept out of his hands all care for his children, and out of his heart all feeling that they are his, by being made to feel that they "belong exclusively to the mother"? It seems to me much more reasonable, much more natural, and very much more Anarchistic, to say that the child of Anarchistic parents belongs to both of them, if they both wish to have united control of it, and, if they don't wish this, that they can settle between themselves as to which one should have it. The question is one, I think, that could usually be settled amicably. But if some unusual occasion were to arise when all efforts to settle it amicably were to fail, when both parents would strongly desire the child and be equally competent to rear it, then, possibly, the fact that the mother has suffered the pain of child-birth might give her a little the stronger right. But I do not feel perfectly sure that that principle is right and just.
I would like to know if Mr. Tucker, upon further consideration, does not agree with me.
F. F. K.
I accept F. F. K.'s challenge, and, in defence of the Anarchism of the sentence objected to, I offer to submit the language in which it is phrased to any generally recognized authority in English, for the discovery of any authoritarian meaning possibly therein contained. F. F. K. seems to misunderstand the use of the word "shall." Now, it may be
ascertained from any decent dictionary or grammar that this