“They Rightly Believe That Their Sons Saved the Liberty of the World”

by Roger Alford

Again and again, my fellow citizens, mothers who lost their sons in France have come to me and, taking my hand, have shed tears upon it not only, but they have added, “God bless you, Mr. President!” Why, my fellow citizens, should they pray God to bless me?

I advised the Congress of the United States to create the situation that led to the death of their sons. I ordered their sons overseas. I consented to their sons being put in the most difficult parts of the battle line, where death was certain, as in the impenetrable difficulties of the forest of Argonne.

Why should they weep upon my hand and call down the blessings of God upon me? Because they believe that their boys died for something that vastly transcends any of the immediate and palpable objects of the war. They believe and they rightly believe, that their sons saved the liberty of the world.

They believe that wrapped up with the liberty of the world is the continuous protection of that liberty by the concerted powers of all civilized people. They believe that this sacrifice was made in order that other sons should not be called upon for a similar gift–the gift of life, the gift of all that died.

Woodrow Wilson, Pueblo Speech of September 25, 1919


3 Responses

  1. The liberty that the American young men of 1917-1918 died for would no doubt be sneered at by today’s supposedly enlightened thinkers as racism, colonialism, and denial of economic and social rights.

  2. Beautiful picture and the quote reminds us of eloquence long since forgotten in modern politics.  Thanks for posting both.   They send chills up my spine.

  3. Who remembers those killed in WWI?  Nobody.  I took my son to a local WWI monument on veterans Day by way of a history lesson.  A small plastic wreath was there from the VFW, otherwise nothing.  My history lesson: the insanity of what nations used to do to each other – in WWI over nothing.

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