Theodore Roosevelt > New York > Page 133
Theodore Roosevelt (1858–1919).  New York.  1906.

Page 133
the government allowed the colonists, it may have been that the empire would have been kept together. The revolt of America was not one of those historic events which are inevitable and foreordained, and in no way to be averted; wise statesmanship, and a temper in the British people willing to correspond, might have prevented it. But as the conditions actually were, it was a benefit. The acceptance, by both sides, of the theory of the supremacy of the mother country was quite enough to dwarf the intellectual and moral growth of the colonies. The “colonial” habit of thought is a very unfortunate one. The deferential mental attitude toward all things connected with the old country, whether good or bad, merely because they are connected with the old country, is incompatible with free and healthy development. No colonist will ever do good original work so long as he thinks of the old country as “home.” The mere fact that he so thinks, prevents his reaching the first rank as an American or Canadian or Australian, as the case may be, and yet entirely fails to make him even a second-rate Englishman. If the men who stay at home and the men who settle new lands can continue members of the same nation, on a footing of perfect equality, this is the best possible outcome of the situation; and the highest task of statesmen is to work out some such solution. But if one party must remain inferior



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