Adaptation is a very vital human trait sometimes being necessary to preserve life. It has never been given the importance that it deserves largely because the quality has been to a great extent universal. There are two distinct meanings to the word; one signifying adapting one’s self to conditions and circumstances and the other adapting circumstances and conditions to one’s needs or desires. In its general application it is more often used to signify the necessity of an individual adapting himself to changed circumstances or conditions.
Strong men are usually able to adapt themselves to changed physical or financial conditions while at the same time refusing to let their minds or morals be swayed by their surroundings. A man may do menial work and for a time find it necessary to take his place in the class of the very poor and unfortunate, but if he is strong he only regards this as a temporary measure and does not do things to cause him to lose his own self-respect. As a natural result he emerges from his privations and sufferings stronger than ever before, while at the same time he can understand and appreciate the failure of weaker individuals under similar conditions.
There are a great many people who feel that because it is necessary to adapt themselves in some measure to the ways and methods of other nations, groups or individuals with whom they have contact or association, that it is also necessary to adapt their mentality and their morals accordingly. This can only be classified as the advice of weak-minded individuals to those whom they consider as weak as themselves.
As a matter of actual fact the white race has been a strong race for a long period of time and wherever the white race has penetrated it has succeeded in carrying with it, its own code of mentality and morals. While this code of conduct and of morals has been by no means perfect, it has established a respect and appreciation for the white race that is universal. As a matter of actual fact, probably the worst thing that can be said of the white man, with the exception of one who is a real criminal, is that he has “gone native” and succumbed to a looser standard of morals’ and of conduct.
The white race has taken its traditions, its own history, its own standards into practically every corner of the world, and has endeavored to live up to these standards, while at the same time it has not endeavored to enforce them upon other people except in those respects where it was necessary in dealing and trading. It is true that there have been many acts of aggression and exploitation on the part of many white men, but at all times there has been a more universal acceptance of moral as well as mental responsibility than on the part of other races. It is also true that this moral and mental responsibility to a code of conduct has been built up gradually over thousands of years and that many white people were at one time in a state of semi-barbarism.
These things are mentioned only to bring out the essential fact that strong peoples and strong individuals do not need to bow to the force of circumstances and conditions, except temporarily, and that determination and persistence, re-enforced by a code of conduct and morals that is consistently raised higher, can be counted upon, as demonstrated by past history, to overcome all obstacles in the way of human progress.
In spite of the confusion existing within the world today in the ranks of the white nations, we must never forget that the status of men is so immeasurably superior, even at the present time, to what it was hundreds of years ago that there is absolutely no comparison. It is almost everywhere conceded that the average man has certain rights. Even in Soviet Russia the things that they have done have been done in the name of the welfare of the people. In spite of the present situation, therefore, the outlook is by no means hopeless, for we will undoubtedly advance much further and faster during the next three hundred years than we have during the past three hundred. This advancement will be due, however, to the strong individuals who are able to adhere to an increasingly higher standard of conduct and morals.
The demagogue and the charlatan continually prate of the welfare of the people along economic lines, while at the same time they endeavor to evade the moral responsibility, not only of the leaders, but of individual citizens. There is much talk of the welfare of the people, redistribution of wealth, enemies of society, exploiters of the public, paternal government, but there is precious little talk of honor, of fulfillment of obligations, of personal responsibility and of experimentation with the experimenter’s own money instead of that of the general public.
There is a veritable mania at the present time for telling other people how they should spend their money. Even government wants to tell business men and private individuals just what they should do with their own property and pass laws compelling them to take their suggestions and advice. This probably invades one of the most precious avenues of liberty when looked upon from the viewpoint of the average man. The farmer and the laborer may actively resent, but will not combat influences that tend to limit their income or that cause them losses in one form or another, but if anyone undertook to tell them exactly how they were to spend any part of the income which they did receive they would be told where to go in no uncertain terms. Yet, as a matter of fact, excessive taxation is merely a means of government forcing business men and private individuals to spend their money in a certain manner with no hope of any return whatsoever. Under such circumstances it is not a case of business men adapting themselves to changed conditions and circumstances, but it is a case of not knowing what the circumstances and conditions actually are to which they are asked to adapt themselves, and sometimes it is a case of adapting themselves to conditions which will speedily end their existence as business entities. Adaptation has to be made to something that is real and tangible and which promises continued existence. Otherwise it could not be called adaptation at all.
The individual should adapt himself to changed conditions and circumstances, to physical environment, to weather and the elements, but he should never suffer his standards of mental and moral conduct to be affected thereby. It is just as wrong to lie, to steal, to repudiate obligations and to forsake our duties and responsibilities in one country, as in another, in cold as in hot weather, and with one person as well as with another. In adapting ourselves, however, there is one particular point that is exceedingly important and that is bearing our adaptation without complaint or grumbling. This does not mean that we should not criticize government when criticism is necessary or advisable, for government is the servant of the people and not its master, but it does mean that if we have a duty to perform, a hardship to undergo, that we should go through with it and get it over without making those around us miserable because of our complaints or grumbling or our air of martyrdom. Sometimes the manner in which we do things is far more important than the things that we do. The person who says “How can I bear the suffering that I have to undergo” is very seldom important enough to bother about. The people who are really important are those who seldom complain and who never complain at such times and under such circumstances as to adversely affect the happiness and the welfare of those they profess to love. It took only one small straw to break the camel’s back and we as individuals should always be careful to see that we do not add this one straw to the burden of any other individual.
The average individual keeps up a good face before strangers and casual acquaintances, but pours out the burden of his woes to his loved ones and occasionally his friends, thereby adding to the ordinary problems of the people he professes to love the additional burden of his distress and state of mind. Let us resolve that we as individuals will be strong and dependable, that we will cheerfully accept the burdens which others may throw upon us through faultfinding and complaints up to the point where common sense dictates other action, but let us never for one moment consider the bestowing through such methods of even a small portion of our own burden to the shoulders of those whom we profess to regard as loved ones and friends.
H. B. MONJAR – April, 1936