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Jacob A. Riis (1849–1914). Theodore Roosevelt, the Citizen. 1904.

Page 102

too. It is my own, and I have never told even him of it; but I have seen stranger things happen. It is this, that Theodore Roosevelt shall sit in the City Hall in New York as Mayor of his own city, after he has done his work in Washington. That would be an object-lesson worth while, one we need and that would show all the world what democracy really means. I shall never be satisfied till I see it. That year I would write the last chapter of my “battle with the slum,” and in truth it would be over. For that which really makes the slum is not the foul tenement, not the pestilent alley, not the want and ignorance they stand for; but the other, the killing ignorance that sits in ease and plenty and knows not that it is the brother who suffers, and that, in one way or other, he must suffer with him unless he will suffer for him. Of that there must be an end. Roosevelt in the City Hall could mean only that.
  Witness his plea in the letter I quoted: “Laborers and capitalists alike are interested.” Of course they are, or our country goes to the dogs. In that day we shall see it, all of us. He saw it always. When I hear any one say that Roosevelt is doing this, or saying that, for effect,