Clyde Lyndon King American Academy of Political and Social Science.

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representatives returned. 'The crisis
was over. The Japanese Government
made the proper amends for the act
of her citizen and intervention was

This splendid exhibition of sym-
pathy, of understanding, of judgment
— that was the note, the spirit rather,
that ran through the whole conduct of
this our first representative to the
Japanese people at a most critical
time. It was a spirit that was carried
on and exemplified by his immediate
successor. It formed the basis and the
foundation for the attitude of mind
which has been taken by our people
and our Government toward the
wonderful development of the Japanese

nation and people in the last fifty
years, a spirit of generous understand-
ing, of real sympathy, and of faith in
their intentions and in their purposes
and their wiUingness to co5perate if
we can retain and keep that faith.

Later on the diplomatic matters
became less important than they had
been in Townsend Harris' day, and
that was succeeded by the next one of
the contacts or associations which the
American people have had with the
Japanese people as a background for
their present relations. Townsend
Harris left Tokio in 1862. He went
back to find his own country in the
throes of a great civil war. Our inter-
ests were concentrated on our own
problems and our own period of
reconstruction that followed. We lost
sight, perhaps, of the interest which
we had aroused and the sympathies
which we had created across the
Pacific. Between 1865 and 1866, when
we began the completion of our great
transcontinental railroads, and the
period toward the end of the last cen-
tury, we were moving forward in that
tremendous development of our west-
ern territory; we were more or less a
people who were centered on ourselves,
and the result was that so far as our
trade relations were concerned — ^which
would have been the basis of many
other relations with the Japanese
people — ^they fell off and amounted to
very httle. In fact so much so, that
during that period some cynic once
remarked that Commodore Perry had
succeeded in opening the ports of
Japan to British trade and American
missionaries. But that last phrase is
the one that I want to pause on for just
a moment. While we were not inter-
ested primarily in the development of
Japanese trade in those intervening
years when we were developing our
own country, we were profoundly
interested in education and missionary

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Relations Between Japan and the United States

work which was being carried on by as
remarkable a band of men and women
as has ever been sent on any mission
by our country. I like to think ot
those splendid ^ statesmen — mission-
aries, like Verbeck and Davis and Hep-
bum and Loomis — who went out in
the late sixties or early seventies, and
became the counsellors and friends of
the Japanese people and the Japanese
Government officials, and helped them
in making these early contacts with
Western Ufe after their long period of

We hardly reaUze how much that
educational and missionary work has
done, because one can never value the
eflfect, or estimate the force of an idea
as it permeates into the body of the
civilization of a people. They estab-
Ushed a university. They established
contacts. They guided the early
students who came in such numbers
to the United States. They formed
that bond which has continued to
exist between our two peoples, that
bond of education in which thousands
of Japanese young men have come
over to study our institutions, to Uve
in the atmosphere of our life, and go
back there to Uve in the political,
commercial and other interests of their

One can hardly comprehend, in the
study of the Japanese problem, the
vast sympathy and aCFection that has
been created in the Japanese people by
the unselfish eflfort of the hundreds of
men who have gone out there and
educated those people through the past
half a century. We must keep that as
part of the background of any ques-
tions or problems that may arise be-
tween our two peoples.

Now I want to say, finally, as an-
other element, something about the
growth of our trade relations, because
these too are forming now, even more
than at any oiheT time, another great

bond of interest and of exchange be-
tween the two nations.

In the early days, as some of you will
recall, we had a large, hopeful and
growing trade of the clipper ships across
the Pacific engaged in the China trade
primarily; and we had great hopes at
the time that those ships, with their
famous skippers, going out from the
New England coast, into the Far East,
and coming back laden with the
materials they had gathered there,
would be the basis of a great trade of
our country with the Orient. One of
the reasons our Government saw fit to
send Commodore Perry to get better
privileges at the ports of Japan, was
for the protection of that early China
trade. These ships often had long
passages to make, often ran out of
fresh water and other necessities, and
were unable because of the seclusion
of the Japanese to enter port and gain
succor and suppHes. That is one
reason the effort was made to bring
this secluded nation within the com-
munity of nations; but it is one of the
ironies of history that, while Townsend
Harris was negotiating the details of
the second treaty that was to provide
this very thing, we were engaged in a
war at home which was to result in
sweeping the American merchant mar-
ine from the sea for a long period of
time. So that, at the conclusion of
that war, much that had been gained
was of no avail because our ship3 were
no longer on the high seas sailing under
the American flag.

So it was for this reason that our
shipping industry failed. Because of
this failure and because of our con-
centration of interests within our own
border and the development of our
own country after the Civil War, very
little progress was made in our trade
relations with the Orient. In recent
years, however, as Japan's needs have
grown, as our capacity for production

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The Annals of the American Academy

has developed, and as we too have been
reaching out to find foreign markets,
we are beginning to build up a trade
which was beyond all the conceptions
of those who first thought of the possi-
bilities of friendly trade relations with
the people of the Far East.

Here are some figures to show how
in the last three years alone that trade
has developed. We all know the de-
mand that hiEis been made in this
country in recent years for various
silk products, but I do not believe'that
we appreciate how much of that silk
comes to us as raw silk from the Em-
pire of Japan. In 1917 we imported
from Japan raw silk worth $154,000,-
000; in 1918, $173,000,000 and in 1919
we imported raw silk to the enormous
total of $328,000,000,

From that amount, sent to us by
Japan, Japan obtains the funds with
which she can purchase in our mar-
ket the cotton needed in her mills in
order to supply the market which she
is developing in China. Here is the
strongest conceivable basis for the
closest possible co5peration in the
development of a splendid trade on
the Pacific between these two countries.

Just a word in regard to the spirit of
co5peration which has characterized
some of our recent trade efforts in the
Orient. The organization of the con-
sortium of which you have read, an
effort of the leading nations to join
together in solving China's pressing
financial problems and assisting in the
improvements which the Chinese need,
is one of the co5perative efforts. The
effort which was made under the lead-
ership of the United States in Japan
during the period of the war, and after-
ward, in the international supervision
of the Chinese Eastern Railway in an
effort to hold open that trade route

into Siberia and Russia is another evi-
dence of that general international and
trade co(5peration. It is along those
lines that lies our greatest hope, and
the greatest possibiUty of closer co5p-
eration with the Japanese people; and
it is because of this that I turn back
again to the spirit that pervaded the
negotiations of our first representa-
tive, and ask, "Are we not justified in
believing that, as in a solution of the
questions which he had, he found suc-
cess by his spirit of generous sym-
pathy, understanding and real earn-
estness of purpose and firmness, so
may we not, studying the various
problems which may arise between
these growing interests of our two
countries, adopt precisely the same
spirit and same method and be assured
of the same success?"

Just one thing more: The fact that
there are problems or questions between
nations is in no sense an evidence of
unfriendly relations between them;
rather it is evidence of the growth and
the closeness of their mutual interests.
Those are the things that bring these
questions up for adjustment. I have
tried to show you thus briefly how
close those mutual interests have been
— ^historic, educational, commercial —
and my one hope is that we as a people,
freed from bitterness, from prejudice,
from hasty judgment, will study the
new questions as they arise, calmly, in
a spirit of generosity, confident that if
we are sympathetic, are loyal to our
own interests but generous in under-
standing the interests of others, we
will find in the Japanese people a
response which will show to us anew
the faith that they have always had
in our unselfish purposes and in our
high international ideals.

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The Attitude op the Chinese Towards Americans

The Attitude of the Chinese towards Americans

By Hon. Paul S. Reinsch^

Recently United States Mmister to China

1AM to speak about the feeling
which the Chinese people enter-
tain towards America at the present
time. I shall therefore not be able to
go back to look at the historic origins.
Our relations with China go back
one hundred and forty years; and, as
you know, our first national consular
representative was appointed to China
in 1786. It is an inspiring part of our
national history — that venturesome
and perilous voyaging from New Eng-
land and the Middle States around
Cape Horn to the ports of the Far
East; it shows the spirit of national
adventure, one that later expressed
itself in the pioneering progress across
the Continent. At the time Town-
send Harris did his work in Japan we
were just on the verge of turning away
from these world-wide developments,
and concentrating on our home affairs.
Through the Civil War we lost our
merchant marine, which happily now
is being restored so that our flag will
again be seen in these distant countries
competing with the other great com-
mercial nations of the world. That is
one of the few advantages we can see
coming out of the troublous times
we have passed through during the
past few years.

In that long period of one hundred
and forty years there has developed
in the minds of the Chinese quite a
definite idea as to what America is,
and what America stands for. Wher-

' Author of: The Common Law in the Early
American Colonies (1899), World Politics at the
End of the Nineteenth Century as Influenced by
the Oriental Situation (1900) » Colonial Govern-
ment (1902), Colonial Administration (1905),
American Legislatures and Legislative Methods
(\WJ), Intellectual CurrenU in the Far Ea8t{m\\
Jniemational Unions (1911). — The Editor.

ever you may travel in China, you can
not fail to be struck with the universal
confidence in Americ'k. That is not
merely holiday talk, or diplomatic
courtesy — it lives in the hearts of the
Chinese people; that living faith in
America, existing throughout so vast a
population — the most antique and
complex civilization in the world — I
believe is one of the greatest treasures
that we possess. It appears and ex-
presses itself on many occasions, but
I shall just cite one illustrative in-
stance. When the American War
Works Drive was undertaken in 1918,
word was sent to China that it would
be desirable if the Americans there
did their part, and perhaps some
Chinese friends might wish to con-
tribute a little. The Chinese were
then in a difficult situation, and no-
body had any expectations at all, but
it was thought possibly they might
contribute something like one hundred
thousand dollars. I casually mentioned
the matter after a dinner to two promi-
nent Chinese officials with whom I was
sitting, simply telling them about the
drive and saying, "Do you think that
the Chinese would wish to express
their good will in some way just to
show that they have taken notice of
it?" They looked at each other and
said, "yes." Within five days they
had formed committees in every prom-
inent city in China, and whereas we
had thought that possibly a few rich
individuals might give a testimonial,
they raised without any further sug-
gestion, entirely of their own motion
and with their own methods, a million
and a half dollars, within two weeks.
I might cite a great many similar
striking instances which speak of

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The Annals of the American Academy

their feeling, but it is the expression
of it as one encounters the Chinese
in every-day Ufe that makes one feel
it so strongly, and that makes people
say, "the best passport anywhere in
China is to be an American."

When we look into the reason for
this feeling which is encountered
everywhere, we think first of the action
of the American Government which
has in general aimed to be helpful
to China. We have helped the Chi-
nese in the opium matter; we have
always taken the attitude that their
rights as human beings and as a
nation should be respected; we have
always stood for a liberal interpreta-
tion of the provisions of the treaties
which are suflBciently harsh under any

The return of the Boxer indemnity
is often cited; in fact, a great many
people have an idea it is because of
this act that the Chinese are so friendly.
Indeed, the Boxer indemnity will be
mentioned as an outstanding fact on
very many occasions in China, and yet
it is rather the spirit of that act than
the amount of money which has im-
pressed the Chinese. The fact that the
indemnity was returned to them with-
out any show of virtue or without an in-
timation that we were doing the Chi-
nese a favor and expected something in
return, but as a banker pays back the
balance that is due, an act of simple
equity, — that impressed the Chinese.
Of course, our foreign friends have
broadly hinted that this matter was
craftily arranged so as to impress the
Chinese, but the Chinese fortunately
did not take any stock in such insinua-
tions, because they know Americans
and have known them for one hundred
and forty years. We could have
treated it as an act of charity; we could
have made it a lever for getting con-
cessions; but we did none of these

things. We said, "Here is your
money, it belongs to you."

The Chinese are characterized by an
innate sense of equity; in all of their
social arrangements there is a basic
equity which manifests itself at all
times. They are the one nation which
could most easily get along without
any government whatsoever, by simply
relying upon this feeling of equity
which lives among the people. And it
is because the diplomatic action of the
American Government has at all times
been based upon the idea that the
Chinese are entitled to human rights,
that we respect these rights, that we
do not ask any concessions for re-
specting them, that the Chinese have
conceived such deep confideitce in
America. Of late when we were in-
volved in the war in Europe, and in
the settlement thereof, it has not been
possible to fulfill the expectations
which the Chinese people had enter-
tained with respect to effective sup-
port of their just claims. Neverthe-
less, they have felt that there probably
were difficulties of which they them-
selves did not know. They in their
essential reasonableness have not
charged us with lack of sympathy and
support, and they have kept their con-
fidence. They have maintained the
same attitude on the Exclusion I^w.
They are most reasonable; they con-
sider that the United States is justified
in not desiring large bodies of people of
entirely different traditions to settle
within the United States.

During all my intercourse with the
Chinese as American Minister I never
heard a harsh word of criticism con-
cerning this matter. It is possible, of
course, the Chinese could be stirred up
about it; there are plenty of people who
are ready to call the attention of the
Chinese very pointedly to the fact that
there is a grievance here. That has

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The Attitude of the Chinese Towards Americans


been done abundantly, but the Chinese
have taken the view which I have
stated to you. Should we become
guilty of any injustice against them,
or should we coldly abandon them to
the intrigues and aggression of others,
their attitude on this point might

On one point the Chinese have
often been indignant, namely, that
Chinese who have a perfect right under
our Laws and treaties to come to the
United States — Chinese officials, mer-
chants and students — are often at our
ports of entry, subjected to very an-
noying delays, and in fact, from their
point of view, to indignities. I shall
mention only one case which recently
happened. A Chinese merchant came
here to inspect our electrical industry,
expecting to place a large order. He
had letters of introduction to American
firms, and his patronage had been
sought for years. The immigration offi-
cial at the port of entry sent him into
the detention place for several days;
when he emerged from there he not
only bought his ticket to New York but
beyond, to England. It is a very poor
policy even from a purely commercial
point of view; «very other nation labors
to attract the Chinese.

I have thus far spoken of matters
relating to the government. The feel-
ing of confidence expresses itself also
quite universally in the daily inter-
course among individuals. Certain
outstanding things have been done by
America and Americans, which have
enlisted the good will of the Chinese.
Great enterprises for human better-
ment have been undertaken, like th^
China Medical Board of the Rockefeller
Foundation, with its splendid new hos-
pital and medical school in Peking, and
similar work elsewhere; a great many
missionary hospitals; colleges and uni-
versities in Peldng, Tientsin, Foochow,

Shanghai, Changsha, Chengtu and
Canton, which are all doing splendid
educational work. These institutions
are centers from which there radiates
an influence that goes to the most,
remote parts of China, and far exceeds
in its beneficiaries the number who
come within the gates of such institu-
tions. They are models upon which
other institutions fashion themselves;
men go out and exert their influence
in establishing similar training insti-
tutions elsewhere. In the great work of
giving to China a share in the modem
education of the world, these institu-
tions have taken the lead.

If these great enterprises had been
established with the purpose of a
charity, to do work for the Chinese,
the latter would have remained apa-
thetic; but as the universal spirit of
Americans is to help the Chinese help
themselves, confidence and real friend-
ship are the result. As in the Boxer
indemnity, it is not so much the money
that is the essence; the twenty miUion
dollars that Mr. Rockefeller gave did
not of itself impress the Chinese, as
they are not easily impressed by sums.
They were, however, impressed by the
spirit of that gift, and the spirit of the
men who came to work there. This is
the real heart of the feeling of confi-
dence — the spirit that has animated
the Americans in China through these
generations. The other nations have
generally been holding to what we
call "treaty port isolation" in deaUng
with the Chinese; they took off the
cream of the trade and concerned
themselves but little with the welfare
of the country. But among Ameri-
cans, first the missionaries, and then
the teachers and merchants, there has
been a different attitude.

The official world representing for-
eign nations has usually taken the
attitude that the Chinese are not ca-

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The Annals of the American Academy

pable of managing their own affairs,
and that the best thing for China would
be to institute a foreign control. That
has been done in the Customs Revenue,
•in which the Chinese themselves
have no chance for promotion to the
higher offices, and which is therefore
a distinctly foreign service. What in
the eye of the Chinese distinguishes
the American point of view from that
of the other nations is that whatever
the Americans have done they have
done in a spirit of cooperation, not
with a view to establishing a hierarchy
of officials or a group of mentors that
would perpetuate itself and pass to
its successors authority over the Chi-
nese. America has been true to her
democratic ideas in her treatment of
the Chinese.

This may be well illustrated from
the work of the Young Men's Christian
Association which has a very powerful
and beneficial influence in China.

The Y. M. C. A. men have gone to
China, not in order to build up there
a permanent American organization
which would tutor the Chinese, but
with the idea of arousing in the Chi-
nese a desire for better things, and
helping them to achieve improvements
for themselves. Thus, for instance,
the development of athletics was
exceedingly necessary in China, both
on the physical and on the moral side.
The classes engaged in business and
learning had led a sedentary life for
centuries; they needed more physical
stamina, because our Western method
of work and life requires more intensive
and long continued exertion than the
Chinese were accustomed to. They
needed athletics for their good health,
to take them away from cards and
chess and other indoor games, and to
take them out into the open; but on
the moral side too, to overcome clan-
nishness, to make them realize the
meaning of fair play in competition;

to learn that defeat can be as glorious
as victory in a fair struggle. Young
China has made decided progress in
such training as one may see at their
great athletic meets. I saw one not
long ago in Taiyuanfu, an interior
capital. The athletic field was in a
comer of the city walls; these huge
ramparts had been cut in tiers, to
afford seats for at least fifteen thou-
sand Chinese whose blue and white
gowns made a bright background to
the scene. There were tents on one
side where the different competing
teams had their quarters, and a grand-
stand closed the quadrangle. The
whole performance went off like clock-
work. "All the colleges and universi-
ties of North China were represented,
including six provinces. There were
four or five "events" going on at the
same time; after every series there were
passed around multiple tally records
so that everybody could know what
was being accomplished. There was
no hitch, no tedious delay.

Such contests had first been nur-
tured by the Y. M. C. A. But Ameri-
cans were not in control as managers;
they were there ready to give a hint
when needed or to act as referee; but
they had impressed upon the Chinese,
"this is your affair, you manage it."
The readiness of the Americans to
start useful work in China and then to
withdraw into the background and
take joy in the Chinese doing it them-
selves — ^that has won the hearts of the
Chinese more than anything else. As
a result of all this these men have
gathered confidence, trust and esteem,
which could not be won in any other

The same spirit prevails among
most of our merchants, who are enter-
ing upon cooperation with the Chinese.
They train up young Chinese in the
methods of Western business. It is
there we can perform one of oiu* great-

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The Attitude of the Chinese Towards Americans


est services. In the organization of
modern business out of the traditional
methods in China, some of the excel-
lences of the ancient system tend to
become defects unless they are cor-
rected. The traditional commercial
virtue of the Chinese should be taken
over into the modern method of doing
business, or there will result a reign
of rank materialism in China. It is
there that the sympathetic guidance of
Americans in cooperative enterprise

Online LibraryClyde Lyndon King American Academy of Political and Social ScienceAnnals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science → online text (page 2 of 108)