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When any sport is carried on primarily for money—that is, as a business—it is in danger of losing much that is valuable, and of acquiring some exceedingly undesirable characteristics. In the case of prize fighting, not only do all the objections which apply to the abuse of other professional sports apply in aggravated form, but in addition the exhibition has a very demoralizing and brutalizing effect. There is no need to argue these points. They are expressly admitted in the Horton Law itself. Moreover the evils are greatly aggravated by the fact that the fight is for a money prize, and is the occasion for unlimited gambling and betting. As the law is construed by the police department of New York at present, it permits prize fights pure and simple. If, as is alleged, the police are technically justified in so construing the law, it only renders it the more necessary that the law should be repealed. However proper it may have been in its intent and as originally construed and administered, the gross abuses in its present administration, make its existence on the statute books of the Empire State an offence against decency."
There is not a word in the Governor's papers that does not mean to honest people, that there is a man in earnest "behind the gun," and one not afraid to burn powder, and fire steel bolts straight at any mark that may be set up to be tested, and to try the marksmanship of the gunner, and prepare for the emergencies of the future, by using the powers of government, first for the information of the people, for the ascertainment of grievances, and then the application of remedy, the certainty being that all the time nothing will be done permanently that is not sustained by public opinion.
HIS IRON HAND.
New York as a "Free City"-"Tri-Insula" Policy Once Proposed-Roosevelt out West
Encounters Roughs Who Were Not Riders-His Immense Campaign Work-Striking Speeches Go to the Right Spot-Returns Home in Time to Stamp upon SeditionA Great Public Service-The Ruffians Ridden Down by a Rough Rider with an Iron Hand
HE City of New York has on several occasions been regarded by revolu
tionists as having interests of her own distinct from those of the
country at large. There could hardly be a more narrow-minded and impracticable scheme of sedition than that of undertaking to augment the greatness of New York by exciting antagonism with the source of that greatness which has always been clearly the country at large.
There has been a presumption in some quarters that would hardly have been suspected of so lacking intelligence as to entertain it, that New York, as a free and independent city, could be more prosperous and powerful than as the great port of a great nation. The most notable incident of the development of an idea to disintegrate the country by the severance of it, in a large commercial sense, from its metropolis, occurred at the time that was most critical, while the organization of secession was going on, to resist the inauguration of Abraham Lincoln as President of the United States. It was assumed by the Mayor of New York that the Union was already dissolved, and that it would be well for that city to augment her grandeur by following the example of some of the Southern States, and separating herself from the Union. The fact of the official suggestion, that there should be a great commercial commonwealth, to be called “Tri-Insula," is not as well known as it should be. There is a lesson in it still to be studied. We quote an account given, looking to the independence of the three islands—Manhattan, Long Island and Staten Island, with, of course, the purpose of including the city and a part of the territory beyond it in New Jersey, so as to give good form to the new nation, and, perhaps, rule over the land after the manner of Rome, possibly with the help of a few States seceded to reorganize the disorder of the Republic and bestow on the North American Continent, as a whole, the blessings of muni
cipal government as established, and illustrating the advantages of the change at the mouth of the Hudson. It is a strange story, but the historian is of celebrity and reliability. He says: "At the outset of the Civil War, there was even an effort made to force the city into active rebellion. The small local Democratic leaders, of the type of Isaiah Rynders, the brutal and turbulent ruffians who led the mob, and controlled the politics of the lower wards, openly and defiantly threatened to make common cause with the South, and to forbid the passage of Union troops through the city. The Mayor, Fernando Wood, in January, 1861, proclaimed disunion to be a "fixed fact” in a message to the Common Council, and proposed that New York should herself secede, and become a free city, with but a nominal duty upon imports. The independent commonwealth was to be named “Tri-Insula,” as being composed of three islands,-Long, Staten, and Manhattan. The Common Council, a corrupt body as disloyal as Wood himself, received the message enthusiastically, and had it printed and circulated wholesale."
The historian from whose instructive work on the City of New York we quote, it may add an interest more than personal to say, is The Honorable Theodore Roosevelt, President of the United States, and he had evidence, during the later weeks of his far Western campaigning tour, in 1900, that there was an idea abroad of governing the country by the City of New York, in, it was assumed, a more constitutional way than had been in the mind of the Mayor of the City in 1860. The experience of forty years was not altogether disregarded. All that was wanted was to carry enough Western States against the re-election of William McKinley to be President and Theodore Roosevelt Vice-President of the United States, to make the decision turn on the vote of the greater New York City. The old city had swallowed Brooklyn and Bronx and quite imitated, within legal limits, the “Tri-Insula” scheme, but it was necessary that there should be a tremendous majority in the City in opposition to the continuance of the McKinley Administration and as Tammany was in possession of Tri-Insula, the whole power of that distinguished organization might be directed point blank to the enterprise of carrying for Tammany the Greater New York by declaring such an overwhelming vote as to sweep with it the electoral vote of the State. Somewhat curiously, there appears to have been an oversight in the preparations made by the managers of this metropolitan enterprise. They had omitted a factor from their calculations. They had forgotten the Governor, except as they noticed that he was making a most formidable campaign in that territory which the Opposition to the McKinley and Roosevelt candidacy had been claiming, with an intense display of confidence, for their exclusive use in the approaching election. The Governor of New York was disturbing the Tri-Insula plan of campaign. That had been made plain at Kansas City, where the hand of the master of the Greater New
York municipality had been ostentatiously displayed. That hand had become a clenched fist. The Governor got in his own experience evidence that there was violence in the air. He encountered it in person, and there were various indications on his way home that the picnic part of the season was over. Indeed, he had spoken with his accustomed vigor; and he had given due prominence to the influential attitude of the people in New York he knew so well in attempts made to break up his meetings, in blows with sticks, and the throwing of stones aimed at him, and one of the points of testimony that he had been doing well, tendered him when he arrived in New York, was to have a window of his special car smashed by a stone that was intended for him. The Governor was alert.
The campaign managers, on both sides, early understood the reciprocal relations between what the Governor of New York was doing in the West and what the chief of the Government of the City of New York was engaged in preparing there. The business question was whether the Great City was to become a pivot upon which the destiny of the Nation should turn. The importance of Governor Roosevelt's expedition was perhaps nowhere so completely comprehended as in the Greater New York. The doubtful quantities were scanned and weighed every day in the headquarters of both parties. On the way West, Thursday, September 6th, the Governor addressed the Republican State Convention in response to a resolution, that he be invited to address it, and a committee of three, including General Francis V. Greene, escorted him to the platform. The Governor was cheered loudly and frequently interrupted by applause as he spoke. He said: "Gentlemen of the Convention: I deeply appreciate the honor you do me in letting me address you to-day. I congratulate you upon the character and qualifications of the men whom you have nominated and upon the declarations which you have put forward on behalf of the great party you represent. First, as to our candidate for Governor. During my two years' term of service Mr. Odell has been not merely my close and stanch friend, but my trusted helper and adviser in every crisis. It would not be possible for any Governor to find in the Chairman of the State organization a wiser and truer friend than I have found in him. Again and again some important measure of legislation or administration has been perfected only in consequence of his advice."
The speech was very satisfactory throughout, and there was generally a demonstrative spirit of congratulation that Odell was up for Governor, and that Roosevelt was on the National ticket.
Crossing Michigan on his way West, the Governor made eight speeches, and arrived at Grand Rapids at 6 o'clock in the evening and had a splendid reception. His first speech that day was at Bay City, 8:30 A. M. He closed at Hastings at 5 P. M. In Grand Rapids he made two speeches at the Audi