Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Today -100: July 11, 1912: Of pardons, hollering, and boxing

A May E. Brown writes a sappy poem to President Taft, who issues her a pardon, which is the traditional response.
Oh, Mr. President, most exalted in the land;
To you I now appeal, for you hold my freedom in your hand.
Not for myself I humbly plead, but a little child
My love and care doth need. ...

Punishment ne’er changes one’s heart,
Only by repentance can all sinfulness depart.
God gives to us forgiveness, at any time the heart repents.
Then why should man himself hold fast when God relents?
And why the waiting through the weary years so long?
If God’s decree be right, then surely man’s is wrong.

Yeesh. Anyway, the pardon released her one year into a 5½-year sentence for white slavery (she coaxed a 16-year-old into prostitution).

Roosevelt is talking about including a downward revision of tariffs in his platform. The NYT, in the most condescending editorial ever, thinks he should drop it, as the tariff “is a subject that requires concentrated thinking, and that lies beyond the powers of the great mass of his followers. It would kill them in a week.” Anyway, the Times says, his movement is purely a personal one, not having anything to do with issues or principles at all. “Mr. Roosevelt knows very well that there is a propensity in human nature that makes large numbers of people, when they look upon him, get up and holler.”

Boxing champeen Jack Johnson is told that if he wants to box in NY, he can only fight a black man.

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