We have moved from an interested to an involved society, never allowing anyone to learn the lessons of life, nor live the strenuous life, but instead are ever dependent on someone else.
“Once upon a not-so-long-ago time in America, responsible parents kept tabs on but were not involved with their children.
They knew the where, what, and with whom of their children’s lives...
Theodore Roosevelt, or Teedie, as they called him, was born on October 27, 1858, in New York City to a well-to-do family.
His father, Theodore Roosevelt Sr., was a successful glass businessmen and philanthropist. The journalist and acquaintance of Theodore Jr., Jacob Riis, writes “of that happy childhood’s home, with the beautiful mother of blessed memory and the father who rode and played with the children,” and he wrote how involved in the lives of their children Theodore Sr. They were the “rarest of parents” because of their “chum and companion as well as their just judge when occasion demanded…” Teedie’s parents, especially his father, were huge figures in his life growing up, and he looked to them as role models.
This quest for a strenuous life appears to be on the wane in America.
Rather than embracing the strenuous life, we appear to be on a quest for the easy life.“In the last analysis a healthy state can exist only when the men and women who make it up can lead clean, vigorous, healthy lives; when the children are so trained that they shall endeavor, not to shirk difficulties, but to overcome them.” Roosevelt challenged individuals “not for the life of ease but for the life of strenuous endeavor.” He lived this idea out in his own life, often hunting and riding, spending a large portion of his time in the outdoors.When President William Mc Kinley died in 1901, Roosevelt became the nation’s youngest president at age 42.What part of his character, personality, and experiences had given him the drive and motivation to accomplish all of these things?To answer this question one must go back to the beginning, to Theodore’s childhood, to explore what his childhood and early adult years were like. did so much in his life that it is hardly imaginable.He became the youngest president in history, traveled all around the world, hunted in Africa and navigated down a previously uncharted Amazonian river, the River of Doubt, which was a dangerous, near-death experience, made even more impressive by the fact that it was undertaken when Roosevelt was in his mid-fifties.There, he lived the rugged outdoor life, learning to rope, ride, and survive in the wilderness.Roosevelt came to believe that the strong individualism of Americans was due in part to the western frontier.He was successful enough that he served in the cavalry as a “roughrider” and became a hero after charging up San Juan and Kettle Hills in Cuba.While in his 20s, Roosevelt traveled to the Dakota Territory.