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

Page 120

because of his color, any more than because of his politics or religion. We do equal and exact justice to all, and I challenge Mr. Williams or any one else to show a single instance where the Commission has failed to do this. Mr. Williams specified the Railway Mail Service in Missouri as being one in which negroes are employed. The books of the Railway Mail Service for the division including South Carolina, Florida, Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi were shown me yesterday, and according to these books about three-fourths of the employees are white and one-fourth colored. Under the last administration it was made a reproach to us that we did full and entire justice to the Southern Democrats, and that through our examinations many hundreds of them entered the classified service, although under a Republican administration. Exactly in the same way, it is now made a reproach to us that under our examinations honest and capable colored men are given an even chance with honest and capable white men. I esteem this reproach a high compliment to the Commission, for it is an admission that the Commission has rigidly done its duty as required by law without regard to politics or religion and without regard to color.
Very respectfully,
  “You cannot change him unless you convince him,” said Mr. Procter to me, as we got up to go down into the valley, whence the gray evening shadows were reaching up toward us.