Top-Rated Free Essay

Theodore Roosevelt

Topics: President of the United States, United States, Theodore Roosevelt, William McKinley, Republican Party, Barack Obama / Pages: 5 (1121 words) / Published: Feb 16th, 2013
Theodore Roosevelt was the twenty-sixth president of the United States, and was an avid conservationist. New York City was his place of birth, and he was born on October 27, 1858 into a wealthy family. He spent most of his childhood at home, studying necessary schoolwork and observing nature and wildlife. As a child, he suffered from many illnesses, including asthma, so he stayed homeschooled until he turned eighteen. Theodore went to Harvard College for four years, traveled to Germany for more studies, and then came back to the U.S. to immediately go into politics. Teddy was elected to be in the Assembly of New York State, which he held office for three years. After his first wife passed away, Theodore left the political life, moved out west, and bought land for a cattle ranch in the badlands of the Dakota Territory. There he spent his time hunting large game and growing closer to the outdoor environment. In 1886, Teddy left the ranch and headed back to New York to go back into politics and marry a second time. He became involved in local government associations such as the police department and the civil service commission for a while. Then in 1897 he joined President McKinley's administration as assistant secretary of the Navy. While in this office he actively prepared for the Cuban War, which he saw was coming, and when it broke out in 1898, went to Cuba as lieutenant colonel of a regiment of volunteer cavalry, which was made up of the hunters and cowboys of the West that he had known before. Elected governor of the state of New York in 1898, he invested his two-year administration with the dynamic and professional characteristics which were his trademark. He would have pursued reelection of governor in 1900, since much of his work was only half done, but the Republicans not chosen him as their candidate for the second office of the United States. He held the vice-presidency for less than a year, succeeding to the presidency after the assassination of President McKinley on September 14, 1901. In 1904 Roosevelt was elected to a full term as president.

Theodore Roosevelt was not only an influential president; he cared very much for the outside environment and nature. He was a very avid president, so if he wanted to complete a task, he would find a way to make sure that it was completed. Teddy was very active in creating many nature preservation locations in the United States of America. “Conservation means development as much as it does protection. I recognize the right and duty of this generation to develop and use the natural resources of our land but I do not recognize the right to waste them, or to rob, by wasteful use, the generations that come after us... Moreover, I believe that the natural resources must be used for the benefit of all our people, and not monopolized for the benefit of the few...”1 Theodore Roosevelt first came to the badlands in September 1883. The prospect of big game hunting had initially brought him to the West, but, by the time he arrived, the last large herds of bison were gone, having been slaughtered by hide hunters and disease. As time passed and he was able to spend more time in the area, he became increasingly alarmed by the damage that was being done to the land and its wildlife. He witnessed the virtual destruction of some big game species. Overgrazing severely impacted the grasslands which also affected the habitats of small mammals and songbirds. Conservation increasingly became one of Roosevelt's main concerns. After he became President in 1901, Roosevelt used his authority to protect wildlife and public lands by creating the U.S. Forest Service and establishing 51 Federal Bird Reservations, 4 National Game Preserves, 150 National Forests, 5 National Parks, and enabling the 1906 American Antiquities Act which he used to proclaim 18 National Monuments. During his presidency, Theodore Roosevelt protected approximately 230,000,000 acres of public land. He is considered by many to have been our country's "Conservationist President." In the North Dakota badlands, where many of his personal concerns for the state of

the environment arose, Roosevelt is remembered with a national park that bears his name and honors the memory of this great conservationist.

Theodore Roosevelt can be closely compared to Barack Obama in the sense of a strong, active government. President Obama is a smart man who believes great wealth is a social problem, and ordinary people would be better off if wealth were substantially taxed away. “Recently he drew inspiration from Theodore Roosevelt, another smart man who had a similar view, completely misinterpreted what was happening in the economy, and actively disrupted it. Theodore Roosevelt was the man who, in 1906, encouraged progressives to promote a federal income tax after it was struck down by the Supreme Court and given up for dead. He declared that “too much cannot be said against the men of great wealth.”2 He promised to penalize certain scoundrels of excessive wealth. Perhaps Teddy’s view was fixed in an earlier era when the greatest fortunes were made by providing luxuries for kings, like fine furniture, tapestries, porcelains and works of silver, gold and jewels. Since the rise of industrial capitalism, however, the greatest fortunes generally have been made by serving millions of ordinary people. One thinks of the Wrigley chewing gum fortune, the Heinz pickle fortune, the Have Meyer sugar fortune, the Shields shaving cream fortune, the Colgate toothpaste fortune, the Ford automobile fortune and, more recently, the Jobs Apple fortune. He inherited money from his family’s glass-importing and banking businesses, and maybe his hostility to capitalist wealth was driven by guilt. Like Obama, Teddy was a passionate believer in big government — actually the first president to promote it since the Civil War. He said, “I believe in power … I did greatly broaden the use of executive power … The biggest matters I managed without consultation with anyone, for when a matter is of capital importance, it is well to have it handled by one man only … I don’t think that any harm comes from the concentration of power in one man’s hands.”

Bibliography

1. Roosevelt, National Parks and Monuments Established by Theodore. "Theodore Roosevelt and Conservation." National Parks Service. National Parks Service, 01 Jan. 2013. Web. 28 Jan. 2013

2. Powell, Jim. "Obama and Teddy Roosevelt: Both Progressives, Both Clueless about the Economy." Cato Institute. Cato Institute, 8 Dec. 2011. Web. 28 Jan. 2013.

3.

http://www.whitehouse.gov/about/presidents/theodoreroosevelt

http://www.nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/peace/laureates/1906/roosevelt-bio.html

http://www.theodore-roosevelt.com/trenv.html#CONSERVATIONCONFERENCES

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Theodore Roosevelt
  • Theodore Roosevelt
  • Theodore Roosevelt
  • Theodore Roosevelt
  • Theodore Roosevelt
  • Theodore Roosevelt
  • Theodore Roosevelt
  • Theodore Roosevelt
  • Theodore Roosevelt and Franklin Roosevelt
  • Theodore And Franklin Roosevelt