That land of the West has gone now, "gone, gone with lost Atlantis," gone to the isle of ghosts and of strange dead memories.
The wanton destruction of wild life, the wanton destruction of American Indian civilizations, the wanton destruction of natural resources they are all ghosts from the past that many will choose not to remember or many that do look back may see those involved from today’s perspective and condemn their fore-fathers and fore-mothers. This would be in the former instance a rejection of heritage and history and in the latter instance a one sided bias view of reality.
We live in a society where meat in the grocery store or in the restaurant is just a product, which in most cases is consumed without concern about what has occurred to bring the product to market. One of the things that people can miss in TR’s personality traits is his ability to look at issues from a wide range of perspectives. You can notice this trait in his writings and his actions where he literally throws himself into contact with people of different life styles and varied dangerous experiences. You may not always like hearing the unpopular position of today from the perspective of the doers of the past but TR would not be TR if he was not clearly able to lay facts before people with bare raw truth from many perspectives.
Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens) a contemporary of TR had many harsh words against what he termed TR’s “blood thirsty” hunting practices. But after both men have past from their days in the sun Twain had only spoken words to save animals from extinction where TR saved the habitat of thousands of animals and saved many from extinction. Read the wilderness warrior to see what TR actually accomplished to save animals for future generations. Then judge which is more beneficial words or understanding why people act and then performing deeds to redirect people’s desirous actions. We live in a land today that would not be possible if the wild beast still roamed but many people today like Twain in the past see one flawed perspective of past reality. In a perfect world things could have been accomplished with less destruction of wild life to make way for the life we now live. It is a stark fact that Wild Life, American Indian civilizations and natural resources could have been better managed and wars could have been avoided but people have been lead by desire more than cool-headed thought through the ages.
TR was a cool-headed leader of men that was able to change the course of history and slow the destruction of non-reasoning hordes of people because he was able to redirect the desires of men by pointing thoughtful consequences of poor actions and thoughtful goals that would fulfill the often careless short range desires of men. I do not believe it is reasonable to think that he could accomplish this without walking a mile in their shoes so do not be overly quick to judge him if he seems to speak with understanding of those that acted in a primeval setting void of laws.
TR’s brand of leadership required that he understood the struggle of those seeking to eke out a life, which formed the foundation, of what we today call modern society. He also thought that it was important that the stories of the old west be told, least we forget completely those strange dead memories and lose the opportunity to thoughtfully lead future generations with thoughtful perspectives of wince we came.