We need a word of caution and of warning. I am responsible for what I have said and what I have done. I am not responsible for what my opponents say I have said or say I have done either on the stump or in untrue political advertisements and untrue posters. I shall not deal with these. I do not care to touch them, but I do not want any of my fellow citizens to misunderstand my ignoring them as expressing any attitude other than considering such attempts unworthy of notice when men are fighting for the preservation of our country.
Our work is drawing to a close—our patriotic efforts. We have had in view but one object—the saving of America.
We shall accomplish that object first by winning the war. That means a great deal. It means getting the world forever rid of the German idea. We can see no way to do this but by a complete surrender by Germany to the Allies.
We stand by the State and National Governments in the prosecution of this object. I have reiterated that we support the Commander-in-Chief in war work. He says that is so.
We want no delay in prosecuting the war. The quickest way is the way to save most lives and treasure. We want to care for the soldiers and their dependents. That has been the recognized duty of the Government for generations.
To save America means to save American institutions, it means to save the manhood and womanhood of our country. To that we are pledged.
There will be great questions of reconstruction, social, industrial, economic and governmental questions, that must be met and solved. They must be met with a recognition of a new spirit.
It is a time to keep our faith in our State, our Nation, our institutions, and in each other. Doing that, the war will be won in the field and won in civil life at home.
FROM INAUGURAL ADDRESS AS GOVERNOR
JANUARY 2, 1919
You are coming to a new legislative session under the inspiration of the greatest achievements in all history. You are beholding the fulfilment of the age-old promise, man coming into his own. You are to have the opportunity and responsibility of reflecting this new spirit in the laws of the most enlightened of Commonwealths. We must steadily advance. Each individual must have the rewards and opportunities worthy of the character of our citizenship, a broader recognition of his worth and a larger liberty, protected by order—and always under the law. In the promotion of human welfare Massachusetts happily may not need much reconstruction, but, like all living organizations, forever needs continuing construction. What are the lessons of the past? How shall they be applied to these days of readjustment? How shall we emerge from the autocratic methods of war to the democratic methods of peace, raising ourselves again to the source of all our strength and all our glory—sound self-government?