Home  »  Theodore Roosevelt, the Citizen  »  Page 119

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

Page 119

  Perhaps the Civil Service Commissioner’s “nerve” had something to do with winning his fight. I like to think it had. With that added, one could almost feel like hugging civil service reform.
  One phase of this “Six Years’ War” I cannot pass by, since it may serve as a chart to some inquiring minds much troubled to find out where the President will stand in matters of recent notoriety. They may give up their still-hunt for information and assume with perfect confidence that he will stand where he always has stood, on the square platform of fair dealing between man and man. Here is the letter that made me think of it. It was written to the Chairman of the Committee on Reform in the Civil Service of the Fifty-third Congress, in the spring of 1894, the year before he left the Commission: Congressman Williams, of Mississippi, attacked the Commission in substance because under the Commission white men and men of color are treated with exact impartiality. As to this, I have to say that so long as the present Commissioners continue their official existence they will not make, and, so far as in their power lies, will refuse to allow others to make, any discrimination whatsoever for or against any man