Imagini ale paginilor
PDF
ePub

16. Give five references, with names, addresses, and occupations (and business or blood relation to you) of reputable persons who are acquainted with you and your family., (See Appendix B, p. 1349.) In case, in the future, still more detailed examinations by physicians

, and trained field workers were required to be made under the auspices of the American consul, this list would serve to make the contacts which are necessary to enable field workers to execute more thoroughly their individual and family-stock investigations.

The CHAIRMAN. Let me ask you to refresh my memory about the investigations or inquiries or studies that were authorized following the presentation of the study of the alien inmates of State institutions. If I remember correctly, this committee authorized you to go along two or three lines, and one, particularly, that I remember, was a study of deportation. But there were others. Now, was this inquiry begun as a result of suggestions made at the time you appeared before the committee?

Doctor LAUGHLIN. Yes, sir. That was the beginning of it. The additional authority from the Department of Labor was needed because it would give me the entree in foreign emigration services, and also, it gave me direct contact with the American consuls abroad in their visé work.

The present study is one of a series of researches into immigration from the biological point of view. In these researches I have acted, also, as an agent of this particular committee, and was authorized to go ahead with the present investigations. This report is the outgrowth of one of these researches.

[ocr errors]

NATURAL QUALITIES OF IMMIGRANTS

[ocr errors]

It seems clear that in studies of this sort, where we are getting information about immigrants in their home territories in order to sort out inadequates, we should take advantage of the opportunities to look also into some positive qualities which the American people heartily, sanction, or which we prize especially highly. The matter of truth-loving is one of the great qualities that the early American stock especially prized. If any family stock coming in, regardless of race, or whether it comes from the same racial stock that originally settled the Colonies here, is lacking in this quality as a natural instinct, such section of the particular family tree ought to be cut out. Then, the matter of inventiveness is another important quality of the American character. The American people prize this trait very highly in their list of national ideals. The American people treasure in their citizens the ability to invent a machine, or an institution, adapted to serve a definite need. The quality of inventiveness is one that should be looked after very carefully in selecting immigrants.

When an emigrant wants to come to the United States, if the biological examinations and the investigations of his family history disclose that he possesses the qualities of inventiveness and initiativo, the applicant should be allowed much credit toward his admission. Industry and common sense are not to be ignored in these standards, nor is the artistic sense or love of beauty. The quality of responsibility ro reliability is another one which it is possible to ascertain by field examinations and family history studies, much more definitely than by

personal clinical examinations. The matter of social instinct, or the natural sense of a square deal, is also a natural trait of very great importance, and should be included with the essential requirements. Of course all of these elements are of a biological order, and the qualities suggested do not pertain to any particular race, but they are qualities that are highly prized in America. It is possible to make biological studies of them, and of other qualities of similar nature, and to make our sifting of the immigrant stream more effective by eliminating those applicants in whom the undesirable traits are disclosed. The field worker must study the family history and the environment, and must strive to evaluate natural hereditary capacities and defects, because these are the qualities upon which a nation is built.

The CHAIRMAN. Since the matter is coming back to my memory now, I would like to have the record show that at about the time you made your studies of defectives the committee was receiving a great many statements with regard to the intelligence tests, alienists' tests, etc., and many people were heard along that line, among them a Princeton professor, Dr. Carl Brigham, who had written a book on the subject. That led to the proposals for looking into matters of that kind. I would like to get down, if we can, to what you might consider a practical immigrant examination, and what conclusion you drew from talking with the United States consuls at their foreign stations.

Doctor LAUGHLIN. Mental tests for adults are now practicable and reliable if supported by individual and family records. At present such tests are developing rapidly, but they are not yet an absolute criterion of natural intelligence if treated without other evidence. They are splendid and necessary supplementary evidence of mental quality. If the authority and responsibility were imposed upon the American consuls, it would certainly be possible for them to make that first sifting of the immigrant stream upon the basis of these four general headings (p. 1267) which I have described, but the consuls would have to have field workers and physicians to collaborate with them in the investigation of the would be immigrants. There would be no serious opposition from the foreign government, because the foreign government takes the initiative by issuing a passport granting permission to the would-be emigrant to go to the United States. Next the would-be emigrant presents this passport that he has obtained from his home government to the American consul for the latter's visé. Then is the time for the American consul to obtain the facts, and he can do much of it in his own office without infringing in any way upon the sovereignty of the host country. The foreign government, it will be presumed, concedes that we can and may get them, else they would not have given a passport which requires a visé. Until the facts that we desire for the information of the American Government are presented to the American consul at the consulate, supported by unimpeachable witnesses, the consul would not visé the passport.

The CHAIRMAN. Do you think, then, from your observation, that foreign countries would recognize the right of a man to supply facts to an American consular officer to whom he applied with a passport and stated that he proposed to emigrate to the United States? Would the consular officer say, "If you are going there as an immigrant, I will have to look into this a little in order to see whether 'A Study of American Intelligence, by Carl C. Brigham, Ph. D.

429—241-SER 5A

-4

you are qualified to be admitted under the laws of the United States" Is that your idea about it?

Doctor LAUGHLIN. Yes, sir.

The CHAIRMAN. He would then ask him the logical questions abouk his health, state of dependency, and ability to earn a livelihood, and the like, and also would call for unimpeachable witnesses ?

Doctor LAUGHLIN. Those facts should always be confirmed throug! reputable witnesses. No man is able to diagnose his own case.

The CHAIRMAN. That is true.

Doctor LAUGHLIN. An average individual can supply his own primary biographical facts, but when it comes to the estimate o character, then, of course, a history and a pedigree, worked out by reputable witnesses, must be presented. Mr. Bacon. How would you find those witnesses ?

Doctor LAUGHLIN. It is not difficult for the trained field worker. It is at first a matter of general inquiry. The immigrant himsel locates the first group of witnesses, and then from these first contacts, the field worker branches to as many other contacts as are needed.

Mr. Bacon. Would all the burden of proof be on the immigrant himself!

Doctor LAUGHLIN. Yes, sir. And that is a very important consideration. Unless the immigrant or the foreign government will bring to the consul the witnesses that are needed, there is no purpose in viséing the passport. This sorting, on information secured by inquiry, is done in a small degree in reference to anarchists or suspected anarchists. It is done also in reference to white slavers and suspected Bolshevists.

IN

PRACTICABILITY AND COST OF EXAMINATION OF IMMIGRANTS

THEIR HOME TERRITORIES

The CHAIRMAN. Would it be practicable and what would it cost per head, to make biological examination of would-be immigrants under the direction of American consuls? Would not the cost of satisfactory examination be prohibitive?

Doctor LAUGHLIN. If properly organized and both its direct and ultimate costs and values balanced, the examination of immigrant in their home territories would be both practicable and economical. I have explained how the work is practicable by reviewing the history of field experiences, in making sample or demonstration case and family history studies of the nature needed. International law would not deter the United States, because under the present natural or unrestricted economic conditions we are an immigrant-receiving nation. An immigrant who desires to come to the United States from a free country would, in return for this privilege, be willing to supply facts about himself.

The matter of cost to the United States would be negligible because, as an immigrant-receiving nation, wo do not have to subsidize the immigrants, but, on the other hand, are able to impose upon them a head tax sufficient to cover all expenses of their examination en route to America. However, besides imposing upon the immigrant a tax sufficient to cover the cost of thorough examination, we could also place upon the immigrant the responsibility to supply, to the

[ocr errors]

satisfaction of the American consul, data and witnesses adequate to establish in the consul's mind, the admissibility of the immigrant. Clerical and scientific field work, and medical inspection, are less expensive in Europe than in the United States, and my actual field studies have shown that satisfactory examination can be made for $25 per person,

This was the cost of the first studies. Of course, after the organization was established and in smooth working order, this cost could be considerably reduced. The placing upon the immigrant of the responsibility for securing facts would reduce greatly the total cost of such operations, whoever has to pay them in the end. In these demonstration studies, the field worker had to take the initiative. However, under the plan of placing the responsibility on the would-be immigrant (which responsibility is necessary from the standpoint of international·law, which draws the line of demarcation quite clearly between the activities of the American consul and the authority of the local governments in which the consular district is located), the cost of satisfactory field examination could, on the average, probably be reduced to approximately $15 per head. In budget planning, the whole immigration service, from the application of the would be immigrant abroad to his final admission at Ellis Island, could be made self-contained and selfsupporting by a head tax on immigrants. The Government should not try to make a profit out of the tax; the matter of immigration is a fundamental one, and too important and vital a process to be made the basis of immediate governmental revenue. The ultimate difference in value between good and bad immigrants is too great to risk their non-separation at our borders in return for a few dollars per head.

Each consul-general could easily, if authorized, establish a staff of field workers and medical examiners, either as immigration attachés from the Department of Labor and the Public Health Service, or as vice consuls, depending on the final division of authority which is worked out between the Departments of State, Treasury, and Labor, in the matter. The consul-general could be made responsible for the personal identification, medical examination, case and family history studies of the would-be immigrant, and could assign to the different consulates, under his jurisdiction, the necessary immigration staff. This centralization of responsibility would insure greater uniformity and more skill and quality in the technical examination, and also would give the flexibility of service needed when work is urgent in one consulate and lacking in another. Each American consul general, from whose jurisdiction numerous immigrants were permitted to come to America, should be given, on his staff, one chief immigration examiner.

The matter of subordinate officers could be worked out according to the needs of the service. These assistants should be American physicians and experienced field workers who, besides a knowledge of the English language, understand and can read, write, and converse freely in the tongue of the applicant-emigrant. The cost of emigrant examination would consist largely in the salaries of the immigration attachés or vice consuls.

Besides clerical aid and assistants, this service would require one trained physician for approximately each 1,000 immigrants per year, and one expert eugenical field worker for approximately each 250 immigrants per year. The physician would make the medical, sani

[ocr errors]

tary, and anthropometrical examinations; the eugenicist would have charge of the family history or pedigree studies. This was the division of functions in the sample cases (p. 1343).

Another advantage of centralizing files and staff and responsibility in the consulate general would be found in the fact that after a series of studies had been made and pedigrees filed there would be found on file many data concerning new applicants who would fit into a family tree already studied.

Besides actual and direct cost of this service, there is another phase of cost which should not be neglected. I refer to the money

. which American taxpayers must pay out for the maintenance of aliens in our State institutions for dependents. These aliens, despite our laws, have been admitted to the United States and have become public charges, not generally of the Federal Government which made the mistake in admitting the individuals, but of the particular State government which carries very largely the responsibility and cost of caring for the dependents and defectives.

In New York State in 1922 the State government expended $15,831,773.67 for the care and maintenance of the insane in her several State hospitals. Of these insane in these hospitals, 45.6 per cent of the first admissions were foreign born. Roughly, if we ascribe the same cost for the maintenance of native and foreign-born inmates, we would say that 45.6 per cent of this sum-$7,219,288.94; roughly, $7,000,000—were expended in 1922 by New York State for the care of the alien insane in her State hospitals only. This excludes the municipal and private institutions. It includes only the insane. It does not take into account the cost of maintaining other types of inadequates—the feeble-minded, the criminalistic, and the like-and this is for New York State only, the most populous and richest out of 48. The point is that if the same amount of money which New York State expends on her foreign-born insane could be used by the whole Nation to perfect the selection of immigrants in our immigration service, a much more thorough 'selection, in reference to all defects, could be secured. The second point is that whereas the Nation possesses the authority and the responsibility for saying who may and who may not enter the United States, it devolves upon the several State governments to maintain, at their own expense, any alien inadequates which need custodial care. If this continues, finally the States may ask permission to sue the Federal Government for reimbursement.

The CHAIRMAN. Will you sum up the matter of cost? I think we should return visé fees if an immigrant is rejected.

Doctor LAUGHLIN. I can sum up the matter of practicability and cost by showing that an examination, by the American consuls, of would-be emigrants with passports is legal, from the standpoint of international law when the foreign government acquiesces, and that probably, for an average of $15 a head, a satisfactory examination could be made. This cost could be assessed upon the emigrant, and would be reduced to the particular emigrant in accordance with his initiative and ability to provide reputable witnesses and satisfactory data. Finally the greater efficiency of first examination in home territories (not displacing the Ellis Island examinations) would so greatly reduce the dependents in American institutions as to make the European examination much cheaper, to the American taxpayer, than the present system.

« ÎnapoiContinuă »