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Suggesting a course of "proportional sacrifice," Ralph Barton Perry, Edgar Peirce Professor of Philosophy and chairman of American Defense, Harvard Group, outlined a plan for keeping our democracy vital while increasing defense in a letter to the New York Times yesterday.
"When the national safety requires sacrifices these sacrifices should be proportioned in accordance not merely with ability to pay but in accordance with obligation to pay." Professor Perry stated.
"The democracy which we defend is a process, a movement in a certain direction: and if we cease to move in that direction we cease to be a democracy. If in our defending we cease to move in that direction, then what we defend is not a democracy."
The problem, as he outlined it, is to reconcile the need for adequate defense with this need for constant progress in the direction of social progress.
Professor Perry ended his remarks with a complaint that the young men and women of the country spend too much of their time merely complaining at what they dislike without suggesting positive plans.
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