Politicians on both sides of the aisle have a habit of referring to the past “greats.” Sentimentalism pervades the American psyche, affecting and effecting us everyday. By associating themselves with great American leaders of the past, politicians hope to inspire action and gain support by playing the recollection card.
It is well known that McCain admires Theodore Roosevelt. He simultaneously was tough on foreign policy and protected the domestic environment; not to mention earning the “Trustbuster” nickname. I am certain many politicians on both sides of the aisle, just like many Americans who know about TR, admire him. Who couldn’t admire Teddy?
But consider the following quotes from TR:
“Every immigrant who comes here should be required within five years to learn English or leave the country.”
“Obedience of the law is demanded; not asked as a favor.”
“No man is above the law and no man is below it: nor do we ask any man’s permission when we ask him to obey it.”
“No man is justified in doing evil on the ground of expedience.”
“Rhetoric is a poor substitute for action and we have trusted only to rhetoric. If weare really to be a great nation, we must not merelytalk; we must act big.”
“There can be no fifty-fifty Americanism in this country. There is room here for only 100%. Americanism only for those who are Americans, and nothing else.”
“I took the Canal Zone and let Congress debate; and while the debate goes on, the canal does also.”
“A typical vice of American politics is the avoidance of saying anything real on real issues.”
How long has McCain been in Congress – an institution which has historically low approval ratings? How many times does his rhetoric of “comprehensive immigration reform” muddle the issue of obedience to the law? How many times has the “do-nothing Congress,” of which McCain is a member, sat around debating immigration issues without achieving anything?
It seems to me, McCain should be careful whom he idolizes. Theodore Roosevelt was neither a fan of law-breaking nor immigrants who refuse to conform. Instead, McCain wants American tax money to help Mexico get its economy under control.
I only wish, Senator, you were more like your idol. Roosevelt would never put up with rhetorical nonsense and pandering to law-breakers. Nor would he put up with the do-nothingings in Congress. He couldn’t change them; but he definitely would call a spade a spade, not beating around the bush.