Publication information
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Source: State
Source type: newspaper
Document type: editorial
Document title: “The Shooting of the President”
Author(s): anonymous
City of publication: Columbia, South Carolina
Date of publication: 7 September 1901
Volume number: none
Issue number: none
Pagination: [4]

“The Shooting of the President.” State 7 Sept. 1901: p. [4].
full text
McKinley assassination (personal response); Theodore Roosevelt (criticism); Theodore Roosevelt (assumption of presidency: personal response); Roosevelt presidency (predictions, expectations, etc.); William McKinley (criticism); McKinley presidency (criticism); William McKinley (presidential policies: criticism); William McKinley (political character); William McKinley (recovery: personal response).
Named persons
William McKinley; Theodore Roosevelt.
In the original source the page containing the editorial (below) is erroneously designated page 5. This same printing error occurs across several issues of the newspaper.


The Shooting of the President

     We add our voice to the common chorus of denunciation which follows the deed of an assassin in attempting the life of President McKinley, and we deplore the possibility that the wounds received by the chief executive may prove fatal. Yet we do this more from a constitutional abhorrence of cowardly and cruel deeds and of a normal human sympathy for the suffering than because we believe that the person of a president is more sacred than that of any other man or that the death of William McKinley would be an irreparable loss to his country.
     It is true that if the president should die his successor would be a man more distinguished for spectacular posturing and reckless violence of speech than for the qualities which go to make a safe administration—yet history records many instances wherein the sense of a new and great responsibility has sobered men as violent of manner as Theodore Roosevelt, and our own national life reveals various cases in which the most unpromising vice presidents have secured acceptably the unexpired terms of their fallen chiefs. If President McKinley should die Roosevelt would succeed him with a realization of the public distrust of his mental poise, and this of itself should be sufficient to steady him if he be not irreclaimably “strenuous.” He would probably carry out McKinley’s policies with greater vigor and less suavity. From this his country might suffer less than his party.
     As a journal of sincere convictions The State cannot now reverse, even in the presence of the calamity which has befallen him, the opinions it has expressed of the executive policy of William McKinley. It has believed, and still believes, that he has done more injury to the cause and the good name of the great republic than any of the men who preceded him in the presidential office. His very personal virtues have enabled him the more effectively to commit what we consider national crimes. His sweetness and suppleness of disposition have made possible the success of measures which cruelly destroy American ideals and are stamped upon weaker lands with blood and fire. Under his administration the United States has become an unclassable government, a republic-empire, a Janus among nations, wearing two faces. We cannot forget this even in our indignation at the treacherous blow which has prostrated him and our sympathy for a sorely stricken man.
     It will be a gratification to the country to know that the attempted assassination was not the work of an American nor prompted by any difference as to our national policies. That would have been a special calamity. The deed was done by an anarchist of foreign birth—one of those mad dogs of civilization that range two worlds with hell in their hearts, a blind, venomous rage against all rule, an insane aspiration to abolish government by destroying the heads of government.
     The later bulletins up to midnight hold out a fair prospect of President McKinley’s recovery. There can be no political enemy who will not, for reasons apart from questions of national policy and national destiny, hope that this expectation may be realized.



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