Full text: Problems in eugenics

V. L. Kellogg. Sociology and Eugenics.231 
And it is only in very recent years that the scourge has been no worse 
than it now is. In 1895 the admissions to hospital for venereal disease in 
the British Army in India reached the enormous proportion of 537 Per I5°00 
men. I hasten to add that this frightful condition has been greatly 
ameliorated. Nor is the British Army by any means the greatest sufferer from the 
scourge. The army of the United States has twice as many hospital 
admissions for this same cause. Russia has about the same as Great 
Britain, Austria and France less and Germany least of all. Germany, 
indeed, has done much more to control the disease than any other great 
nation, unless it be Japan, for which I have not been able to get data. 
As syphilis is not a notifiable disease in Great Britain—it certainly ought 
to be—it is impossible to state its proportions of abundance in the civil 
population, but this fact is most suggestive ! Of the young men who offered 
themselves for enlistment in the British Army in 1910 i| per 10,000 were 
rejected because of syphilis, while for the same year in the Army 230 per 
10,000 were admitted to hospital with syphilis. And for all venereal disease 
the proportion was 31J per 10,000 of those applying for enlistment rejected, 
and 1,000 per 10,000 of those in the Army admitted to hospital. In other 
words, while the Army recruiting boards discover in the civil population and 
reject back into it but one and a half syphilitic men and 30 others suffering 
from gonorrhoea and soft chancre per 10,000, the Army finds within itself a 
constant proportion of attainted men of many times that number. It is, 
indeed, a very breeding ground of the most dysgenic of human diseases. 
The public does not recognize, as a recent editorial in the Lancet emphasizes, 
the vast importance to the community of the prevention of venereal disease. 
The effect of gonorrhoea in causing sterility and chronic invalidism in 
women is only now beginning to be understood, while we are ever finding 
more and wider extensions of the activity of the syphilitic poison. 
My time is finished. I have made but the most fleeting survey of my 
field. But has this survey not suggested to you the need of attention from 
students and propagandists of eugenics to the dysgenic aspect of militarism ?

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