Bee School

This was published in 1792, in an address by George Logan to the Germantown (Pennsylvania) Society for Promoting Domestic Manufacture:

We may just observe, that the hive is a school, to which a number of people ought to be sent; prudence, industry, benevolence, public spiritedness, economy, neatness, and temperance, are all visible among the bees. These little animals are all actuated by a social spirit, which forms them into a body politic, intimately united, and perfectly happy. They all labor for the general advantage; having no partial interest, no selfish distinction to support, they are happy, because the concurrence of their several labors inevitable produces abundance, which contributes to the riches of the individual. Let us compare human societies to this, and they will appear altogether monstrous. Necessity, reason, and philosophy, have established them for the commendable purposes of mutual aid and benefits but a spirit of selfishness destroys all; and one half of mankind to load themselves with superfluities, leave the other destitute of common necessaries.

This is even more true now than it was two hundred years ago, except now our actions are killing off the honeybees. Where will the school be then?

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