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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 73.djvu/429

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425
CELIBATE EDUCATION TO-DAY

all upon universal attitudes and firmly crystallized expressions, her married sister, her parents and her brothers, even the children in the seats before her, all look on her as a failure in life, and, worst of all, she feels the same in her heart. Such disappointment would acidulate the sweetest spirit. Besides, she is leading an unnatural existence, dealing with children of the same age twenty, thirty or forty years, while the vast bulk of women have the care of one brood only from marriage to death. The constant strain on her temper within the school and without it makes her either querulous and harsh or flabby and indifferent—both states disastrous for discipline.

For the interests of the student, and consequently of all the race, is it a good model to set before maturing minds that the unmarried woman is the best type of all? Still more, is it wise to have examples of mannish women, as so many of them inevitably tend to the paths that men tread, after admitting to themselves that they are practically excluded from the chosen sphere of women, the home? Many of them turn to money making with all the avidity of their brothers. We have seen such exhibitions of greed and contentiousness among the women teachers in two of our largest cities when they have banded together for an increase in their salaries, going to much greater lengths than men would dare to do under such circumstances. The influence of all this will be felt in time upon the characters of the young.

All these weaknesses in the woman teacher have brought themselves to the surface; they are inherent, and therefore incurable by any method of selection or supervision. If we add the fundamental argument that we have derived from the test with men it seems a foregone conclusion that the celibate female teacher will fall just as far short as her celibate brother; she will fail in the schoolroom just as he did.

Failure is the lot of each because each is abnormal. "The normal citizen is a father or mother," thus tersely and truly does the president of the United States express the sentiment. If this is so and it has to be, who can properly guide young persons into that realm except normal men and women as teachers?

Another deduction from this premise is that we must have both sexes instructing the young. The difficulty with the male has been settled, we no longer require him to be unmated. On the other hand, it is almost an unfailing query on the part of appointing officers whether a male applicant is married or not. In numerous instances the preference is unhesitatingly given to the one with the wife.

This solution, however, should be impossible with women. It is abhorrent and disgusting to the average person to think that men should allow their wives to be breadwinners unless for special reasons. Again has Mr. Roosevelt summed up the case when he spoke of men as the home providers and women as the home keepers. This is the result of aeons