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

Page 376

game leg in a chair while the doctors dressed it,” he said (it was after the accident in Massachusetts in which the President’s coach was smashed and the secret service man on the driver’s seat killed). “It hurt, and now and then he would wince a bit, while he discussed the strike and the appeals for help that grew more urgent with every passing hour. The outlook was grave; it seemed as if the cost of interference might be political death. I saw how it tugged at him, just when he saw chances of serving his country which he had longed for all the years, to meet—this. It was human nature to halt. He halted long enough to hear it all out: the story of the suffering in the big coast cities, of schools closing, hospitals without fuel, of the poor shivering in their homes. Then he set his face grimly and said:
  “‘Yes, I will do it. I suppose that ends me; but it is right, and I will do it.’
  “I don’t agree with labor in all its demands,” added the Secretary. “I think it is unreasonable in some of them, or some of its representatives are. But in the main line it is eternally right, and it is only by owning it and helping it to its rights that we can successfully choke