Thursday, September 08, 2011

Today -100: September 8, 1911: Peace v. righteousness

John Shafroth, the governor of Colorado, is going to the New Jersey Divorce Convention (I don’t know what that is, but I’d guess it has something to do with standardizing divorce law nationally, or getting states to recognize divorces from other states) (update: elsewhere in the paper, NY State Senator Franklin Delano Roosevelt announces a resolution calling for a uniform federal divorce law). Gov. Shafroth so hates his lieutenant governor that he has barred him from acting as governor in his absence. Lt. Gov. Fitzgerald says he will break into the executive offices or call out the troops if he is barred from them.

I’ve mentioned the (female) mayor of Hunnewell, Kansas, Ella Wilson’s battle to the death with the city council, which refuses to confirm any of her appointments or even meet with her. As a result, no tax levy has been made this year, but she says she will appoint women who will serve without pay to the offices of city clerk, treasurer, marshal and streets commissioner.

Theodore Roosevelt pens an editorial in The Outlook attacking Taft’s arbitration plans as “shams.” He says “It is one of our prime duties as a nation to seek peace. It is an even higher duty to seek righteousness.” Wars in which the US put righteousness above peace include the Revolutionary, Civil and Spanish-American wars. He does not express an opinion on the righteousness of the War of Jenkins’ Ear. “I, for one, would rather cut off my hand than see the United States adopt the attitude either of cringing before great and powerful nations who wish to wrong us or by bullying small and weak nations who have done us no wrong.” (Colombia, which did us wrong by holding land Roosevelt wanted to build a canal on, might have something to say about that.) He lists various matters he thinks should not be subject to arbitration, including the Monroe Doctrine, the Platt Amendment with Cuba, the Panama Canal, racial exclusion of immigrants, etc.

Rudyard Kipling intervenes in the Canadian elections, denouncing the tariff reciprocity treaty in a message to the Canadian people. He says “Ten to one [90 million Americans to 9 million Canadians] is too heavy odds. ... It is her own soul that Canada risks to-day.” And once that soul is “pawned,” Canada will inevitably come to adopt American standards in all things. “She might, for example, be compelled later on to admit reciprocity in the murder rate of the United States...”

The (US) governor-general of the Philippines, William Cameron Forbes, issues an order: “The provisions of the act are hereby made applicable to all districts within the Moro Province. It is therefore declared to be unlawful for any person within the Moro Province to acquire, possess or have the custody of a rifle, musket, carbine, shot-gun, revolver, pistol or any other deadly weapon from which a bullet may be discharged, etc., or to carry, concealed or otherwise on his person, any bowie knife, dirk, dagger, kris, campilane, barong, spear or any other deadly cutting or thrusting weapon except tools used exclusively for working purposes and having a blade less than fifteen Inches in length, without permission from the Governor of the Province.”

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