OCR Interpretation


The day book. (Chicago, Ill.) 1911-1917, March 03, 1917, NOON EDITION, Image 8

Image and text provided by University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Library, Urbana, IL

Persistent link: http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83045487/1917-03-03/ed-1/seq-8/

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WHY DOES AMERICA PUNISH MOTHERS FOR
THE SINS OF RASCAL FATHERS?
BY JUDGE HENRY NEIL
Do you know that deserted moth
ers are not permitted to participate
in the benefits of the mothers' pen
sion laws?
Do you know that thefirst state
wide mothers' pension law enacted in
Illinois in 1911 provided for the pen
sioning of deserted mothers with de
pendent children as well as all other
dependent children?
Do you know that certain interests
succeeded two years later in chang
ing this first mothers' pension law so
that it could not benefit deserted
mothers at all, and that on July 1,
1913, hundreds of deserted mothers
of dependent children were cut off
oL-the mothers' pension payroll and
thrown onto "charity, with the re
sult that these children were taken
away from their mothers and sent
to institutions?
Do you know that 27 states, adopt
ing mothers' pensions, followed with
the same kind of a law, excepting
only Michigan?
Do you know, for example, that
the city of New York paid over three?
and a half million dollars to chil
dren's institutions in New York city
for the care of 22,000 children dur
ing the year 1916?
Do you know that these institu
tions in New York city collect funds
by charity balls and by personal so--liciting
to the extent of nearly three
and a half million dollars a year in
addition to the three and a half mil
lion dollars paid to them each year
from taxation, or, in the total, over
$300 per year per child.
Do you know that last year about
100,000 children in 27, states were
kept with their own mothers and out
of institutions by the mothers' pen
sion system, at a cost to the tax pay
ers of only $10,000,000, about $100
a year per child, while it cost $300 a
year per child to keep the children of
deserted mothers hi the institution?
Do you know that this outrageous
system of taking, children away from
deserted mothers is costing the tax?
payers of every state, except Michi
gan, millions of dollars each year, be
sides ruining these children by the
cruel" coldness of the unloving insti
tution kind of care?
Do you know that most of the de
serting fathers are diseased or
drunkards and-are unfit for family
life and that this is the cause of their
deserting?
Do you know that many mothers'
continue to live with diseased, de
bauched and otherwise unfit fathers
and breed defective children because
of fear of having all their children
sent to institutions, if their husband
leaves?
Do you know that the legislature
of eevery'state each session is impor
tuned to appropriate more millions to
keep these deserted children after
they are taken away from deserted
mothers?
Do you know that some of these
deserting diseased fathers are
brought back home under threat of
imprisonment if they do not live with
their families and that they do live
home for a few years more and
breed more defective children?
Do you know that the increase in
births of defective and subnormal
children has increased over 300 per
cent in the last ten years?
Do you know that if the present
system of compelling good mothers
to keep bad husbands by the fear of
losing all the children they now have,
if they refused to breed more .chil
dren and kick the' rascal husband
out, has filled to overflowing all the
institutions now built and will bank
rupt every state that continues it
many years longer? j,
Now that you do know this, what
do you intend to do about i?

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