Theodore Roosevelt The Square Deal Essay

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Roosevelt’s “Square Deal”

Theodore Roosevelt, the 26th president of the United States, was active in politics from a young age. Though he assumed the role as president only after McKinley’s assassination, he prided himself on his broadening of the executive powers, as well as that of the federal government; he passionately took McKinley's place as Chief executive. Roosevelt was a lively and devout nationalist and a strong believer of a powerful central government. Teddy Roosevelt's presidential platform, as well as his domestic program, became known as “The Square Deal”, because he vowed not to favor any group of Americans and to be fair to all. Teddy Roosevelt encouraged the nation to revive an active role in global politics, particularly …show more content…

Unlike previous presidents, Roosevelt defended laborers right to organize and strike without military intervention. In 1902, Teddy Roosevelt took a hand in the anthracite coal strike after the threat of cutting off heating fuel for homes, schools, and even hospitals. He openly recruited representatives of the company and the workers to meet in the White House for a negotiation of terms as a means of mediating the issue. Roosevelt used his connections as Chief Executive to have Wall Street threaten to withhold credit from the coal companies and he even mentioned calling in the army to run the mines. His strategy paid off when the companies’ arbitrators consented to a modest pay increase as well as a shortened workday for the laborers. This was the first incident in which a president had candidly intervened in a discord between a company and its workers, at least inherently on the side of the laborers. Roosevelt explained his actions as contending toward a “Square Deal” between corporations and their employees; he coined the phrase “Square Deal” as part of his campaign slogan during the election of 1904. He did not share McKinley’s conservative pro-business policies, and instead became known as the “trust-buster” after being the …show more content…

Theodore Roosevelt’s most daring actions arose in the area of reservation of natural resources; his passion for nature was a result of his frail health as a boy. His childhood was plagued by suffering from severe asthma and weak eyesight, which followed him throughout adulthood as well. Roosevelt became an ostensibly passionate and enthusiastic outdoorsman. During the time which he grieved the loss of both his wife and mother, he took a leave from politics to spend two years on a cattle ranch in the badlands of the Dakota Territory; it came to be apparent to Theodore the environmental damage to the West and its wildlife. There, he became an unmistakably concerned advocate for preserving wilderness: a preservationist. Preservationists frequently clashed with companies who saw the wilderness merely in terms of resources for production, or spaces for residential and commercial developments. Though Roosevelt was a passionate preservationist, he understood the necessity of conciliation between the generally split populous. His compromise was a conservation program that provided the regulated use of the nation’s wilderness. In 1905, Congress created the Forest Service, at the president’s advising, to manage the newly established federally owned forest reserves; he appointed fellow preservationist Gifford Pinchot as the head of the new agency.

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