The Writings of Carl Schurz/To Louis R. Ehrich, July 14th, 1904

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Bolton Landing, N. Y., July 14, 1904.

Mr. Roosevelt was approached before the Republican Convention by the signers of the great petition through Governor Crane of Massachusetts. The response was the insolent Philippine paragraph in the Republican platform which was, no doubt, drawn by Lodge with the consent of Roosevelt. It means the keeping of the Philippines for military reasons. All you might get out of Roosevelt now would at best be a vague equivocal statement to deceive the people into false hopes. Moreover, those who approach him now would be in great danger of appearing to promise support to Roosevelt's candidacy in case their request is in any sense granted.

As to Parker, I do not agree with you. He has done two immense services to the country. But for his prompt and vigorous declaration, the silver specter would still disturb the minds of people, or, at least, it would be used for that purpose. He has killed it so dead that it will trouble this generation no more. This is a very great thing.

Secondly, no matter what his antecedents and his associations may have been, his attitude has given the country a new inspiration which is of inestimable value. The people have again something of a moral nature to be proud of. If Parker is elected he will know that he owed his election to the prestige acquired by what is popularly understood to have been an act of uncommon moral courage, of manly independence and of civic virtue. He would have to be an excessively dull man not to understand that this was, and will remain, the principal element of his strength, and this can hardly fail to have a most healthy influence upon his Administration. I therefore think that the fullest recognition of the moral value of his act on the part of the Independents is just and wise, and I have, for these reasons, expressed my personal appreciation of it as promptly as possible.