Page:The Story of Mexico.djvu/451

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The darkest days of the Mexican Republic are over. Its members have learned sharp lessons from adversity; they have suffered every thing that their own headstrong conduct, their vain-glorious ambition could bring upon them—civil war, anarchy, invasion by the army of a neighboring government—their natural friend perverted to an enemy partly by their own folly,—the unwarranted intervention of a foreign potentate, the difficulties of debt, want of public faith, a low state of public honesty.

Out of all these troubles they have bravely emerged, and now take their stand, heavily weighted still, indeed, with the burdens of past mistakes, among them the lingering distrust of other nations, but young, full of promise, with all the elements surrounding them of a possible great future. This future must depend for the most part on their own exertions. The children of to-day must be reared in such enlightened fashion that they may avoid the mistakes and crimes of the generation before them; they must learn to long for honorable peace, and must resist the pull there is to their blood for change and military renown. They must seek glory in the permanence of their institutions and the development of their great resources, thus slowly winning the confidence of other nations.

Then they will find these other nations, and especially the powerful one next them on their own continent, ready to perform the neighborly part of protecting their interests, sympathizing in their prosperity, generously willing to share with them the growing fame of the civilization of America.