Teddy Roosevelt speaks out on immigration

G. Sam Piatt

Immigration is a hot topic of debate these days, whether it comes in town halls or from anglers and hunters one the water and in the woods.

Firing tear gas across the fence into Mexico to prevent illegals from entering! I feel sorry for them, especially the children, but America simply can’t handle all the people in the world who would like to live here. Whatever happened to the spirit of Ellis Island, when immigrants sought to come in legally. There are still laws to govern their hopes for entry, and the United States has no choice but to enforce them.

So many countries have allowed evil dictators to gain power, and to leave them powerless by taking away all their guns.

Rise up, you folks. Elect an honest government, collect taxes to pay for such essentials as drinking water and electricity. Follow the lead of the Constitution of the United States of America.

That’s just a few of my thoughts on the matter.

Theodore Roosevelt had his ideas on the subject when he spoke in 1907 about being an American: “In the first place, we should insist that if the immigrant who comes here in good faith becomes an American and assimilates himself to us, he shall be treated on an exact equality with everyone else, for it is an outrage to discriminate against any such man because of creed, or birthplace, or origin. But this is predicated upon the person’s becoming in every facet an American,

and nothing but an American…There can be no divided allegiance here. Any man who says he is an American, but something else also, isn’t an American at all. We have room for but one flag, the American flag… We have room for but one

language here, and that is the English language… and we have room for but one sole loyalty and that is a loyalty to the American people.”

It seems to me his remarks still ring true today. What do you think?


I shook the dust off a column written for this newspaper in 2010, a story about one of my favorite vacations: Fayne Robinson and I “worked” the morning shift, while my two sons, Kelly and Kendall, and a grandson, Travelin’ Travis, plied the afternoon and evening shifts.

Fayne and I would arise at daybreak and fire up the silent-running generator on the rear of the 72-foot houseboat. As soon as the coffee perked, and we had a mug of the life-giving liquid in our bellies and a mug in our hands to go, we would step into the fishing boat tied to the rail. Then we’d flick on the electric trolling motor and slip off into the mist that spread its ghostly fingers across the gravel points and into the weedy coves of Dale Hollow Lake. That’s the beauty of a houseboat vacation on Dale Hollow Lake. You tie the floating cabin off near the waters you want to fish. You don’t even have to kick

in the outboard.

One morning we were casting for small mouth over an underwater weed bed just off a small island that covered only about an acre. I cast a jig adorned with a curly tail grub and was rewarded with a white crappie that measured 17 inches. The next cast brought another that was 14 inches long.

We concentrated on the crappie until the school moved off and left us. We did not locate the small mouth.


One nice thing about working the morning shift: Our timing was such that by the time we arrived back at the houseboat, Fayne’s wife, Nancy, and my wife, Bonnie, would be up, as would Kelly, the gravy-maker. We could smell the bacon and

sausage frying as we tied the small boat off to the rail. We usually walked into the dining room/living room area just as the homemade biscuits were coming out of the oven.

But the bluegill were not intimidated. Fishing redworms straight down from the rear of the boat, Bonnie and Nancy caught some beauties. We cleaned enough to have a wonderful fish fry on Friday, Nov. 4.

Travein’ Travis turned out to be the smallmouth champ, boating some of these fighters each time out. All small mouth were released to fight again.

We rented the houseboat out of Hendricks Creek Resort, which, in addition to cabins, offers six different houseboat rental plans. Late fall (Sept. 12-Nov.30) and early spring (March 18-May 12) rates are much cheaper than what you would pay for a boat during peak summer months.

The chance for a trophy smallmouth is one of the main things that keep fishermen coming back to this 27,000-acre lake, two-thirds of which is in Tennessee andone-third in Kentucky.


G. Sam Piatt

Reach G. Sam Piatt at [email protected] or 606-932-3619.

Reach G. Sam Piatt at [email protected] or 606-932-3619.