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than whether or not in one decade we have increased one and a half per cent, more than the average rate of increase in wealth or not. It is a good thing that we of this nation should keep in mind, and should have vividly brought before us the fact to which your ancestors, Mr. President and members of this Society, owe their greatness; that while it pays a.people to pay heed to material matters, it pays infinitely better to treat material as absolutely second to moral considerations. I am glad for the sake of America that we have seen the American Army and the American Navy driving the Spaniard from the Western world. I am glad that the descendants of the Puritan and the Hollander should have completed the work begun, when Drake and Hawkins and Frobisher singed the beard of the King of Spain, and William the Silent fought to the death to free Holland. I am glad we did it for our own sake, but I am infinitely more glad because we did it to free the people of the islands of the sea and tried to do good to them.
I have told you why I am glad, because of what we have done. Let me add my final word as to why I am anxious about it. We have driven out the Spaniards. This did not prove for this nation a very serious task. Now we are approaching the really serious task. Now it behooves us to show that we are capable of doing infinitely better the work which we blame the Spaniards for doing so badly; and woe to us unless we do show not merely a slight but a well-nigh immeasurable improvement! We have assumed heavy burdens, heavy responsibilities. I have no sympathy with the men who cry out against our assuming them. If this great nation, if this nation with its wealth, with its continental vastness of domain, with its glorious history, with its memory of Washington and Lincoln, of its statesmen and soldiers and sailors, the builders and the wielders of commonwealths, if this nation is to stand cowering back because it is afraid to undertake tasks lest they prove too formidable, we may well suppose that the decadence of our race has begun. No; the tasks are difficult, and all the more for that reason let us gird up our loins and go out to do them. But let us meet them, realizing their difficulty; not in a spirit of levity, but in a spirit of sincere and earnest desire to do our duty as it is given us to see our duty. Let us not do it in the
spirit of sentimentality, not saying we must at once give universal suffrage to the people of the Philippines—they are unfit for it. Do not let us mistake the shadow for the substance. We have got to show the practical common sense which was combined with the fervent religion of the Puritan; the combination which gave him the chance to establish here that little group of commonwealths which more than any others have shaped the spirit and destiny of this nation; we must show both qualities.
Gentlemen, if one of the islands which we have acquired is not fit to govern itself, then we must govern it until it is fit. If you cannot govern it according to the principles of the New England town meeting–because the Philippine Islander is not a New Englander-if you cannot govern it according to these principles, then find out the principles upon which you can govern it, and apply those principles. Fortunately, while we can and ought with wisdom to look abroad for examples, and to profit by the experience of other nations, we are already producing, even in this brief period, material of the proper character within our own border, men of our own people, who are showing us what to do with these islands. A New Englander, a man who would be entitled to belong to this Society, a man who is in sympathy with all that is best and most characteristic of the New England spirit, both because of his attitude in war and of his attitude toward civic morality in time of peace, is at present giving us a good object lesson in administering those tropic provinces. I allude to my former commander, the present Governor-General of Santiago, Major-General Leonard Wood. General Wood has before him about as difficult a task as man could well have. He is now intrusted with the supreme government of a province which has been torn by the most hideously cruel of all possible civil wars for the last three years, which has been brought down to a condition of savage anarchy, and from which our armies, when they expelled the armies of Spain, expelled the last authoritative representatives of what order there still was in the province. To him fell the task of keeping order, of preventing the insurgent visiting upon the Spaniard his own terrible wrongs, of preventing the taking of that revenge which to his wild nature seemed eminently justifiable, the preserving of the rights of property, of keeping unharmed the people who had
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been pacific, and yet of gradually giving over the administration of the island to the people who had fought for its freedom, just as fast as, and no faster than, they proved that they could be trusted with it. He has gone about that task, devoted himself to it, body and soul, spending his strength, his courage, and perseverance, and in the face of incredible obstacles he has accomplished very, very much.
Now, if we are going to administer the government of the West Indies Islands which we have acquired, and the Philippines, in a way that will be a credit to us and to our institutions, we must see that they are administered by the General Woods. We have got to make up our minds that we can only send our best men there; that we must then leave them as largely unhampered as may be. We must exact good results from them, but give them a large liberty in the methods of reaching these results. If we treat those islands as the spoil of the politician, we shall tread again the path which Spain has trod before, and we shall show ourselves infinitely more blameworthy than Spain, for we shall sin against the light, seeing the light.
The President says that this is New England doctrine. So it is. It is Dutch doctrine, too. It is the doctrine of sound Americanism, the doctrine of common sense and common morality. I am an expansionist. I am glad we have acquired the islands we have acquired. I am not a bit afraid of the responsibilities which we have incurred; but neither am I blind to how heavy those responsibilities are. In closing my speech, I ask each of you to remember that he cannot shove the blame on others entirely, if things go wrong. This is a government by the people, and the people are to blame ultimately if they are misrepresented, just exactly as much as if their worst passions, their worst desires are represented; for in the one case it is their supineness that is represented exactly as in the other case it is their vice. Let each man here strive to make his weight felt on the side of decency and morality. Let each man here make his weight felt in supporting a truly American policy, a policy which decrees that we shall be free and shall hold our own in the face of other nations, but which decrees also that we shall be just, and that the peoples whose administration we have taken over shall have their condition made better and not worse by the fact that they have come under our sway.
(ARCHIBALD PHILIP PRIMROSE)
PORTRAIT AND LANDSCAPE PAINTING
(Speech of Lord Rosebery at the annual banquet of the Royal Academy, London, May 5, 1894. Sir Frederic Leighton, President of the Royal Academy, was in the chair, and in proposing “ The Health of Her Majesty's Ministers,” to which Lord Rosebery replied, he said: “No function could be more lofty, no problem is more complex than the governance of our Empire, so vast and various in land and folk as that which owns the sceptre of the Queen. No toast, therefore, claims a more respectful reception than that to which I now invite your cordial response—the health of the eminent statesmen in whose hands that problem lies—Her Majesty's Ministers. And not admiration only for high and various endowments, but memories also of a most sparkling speech delivered twelve months ago at this table, sharpens the gratification with which I call for response on the brilliant statesman who heads Her Majesty's Government, the Earl of Rosebery.")
Your ROYAL HIGHNESS, MY LORDS, AND GENTLEMEN: No one, I think, can respond unmoved for the first time in such an assembly as this in the character in which I now stand before you. You have alluded, sir, to the speech which I delivered here last year. But I have to confess with a feeling of melancholy that since that period I have made a change for the worse. [Laughter.] I have had to exchange all those dreams of imagination to which I then alluded, which are, I believe, the proper concomitants of the Foreign Office intelligently wielded, and which, I have no doubt, my noble friend on my right sees in imagination as I did then -I have had to exchange all those dreams for the dreary and immediate prose of life—all the more dreary prose because a great deal of it is my own. There is one function, however, which has already de.