Theodore Roosevelt > New York > Page 179
Theodore Roosevelt (1858–1919).  New York.  1906.

Page 179
self-government, like other sections; though those rights are of a peculiar kind, because of the peculiar needs and characteristics of the grantee. They can be altered, amended, enlarged, or withdrawn at the pleasure of the grantor, the State legislature. Even the enormous growth of the urban population during the last half-century has not in the least altered the legal and political status of the city as the creature of the State.
  Long before the Revolutionary War had closed, the old government of the confederation had demonstrated its almost utter impotence; and things grew worse after the peace. The people at large were slow to accept the idea that a new and stronger government was necessary. The struggle they had just passed through was one for liberty, against power; and they did not for the moment realize that license and anarchy are liberty’s worst enemies. Their extreme individualism and their ultra-independent feelings, perpetually excited and played upon by all the legion of demagogues, inclined them to look with suspicion and distrust upon the measures by which alone they could hope to see their country raise her head among the nations of the earth. The best and wisest men of the land saw from the first the need of a real and strong union; but the mass of the people came to this idea with the utmost reluctance. It was beaten into their minds by the hard logic of



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