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Roosevelt’s Conservation and Consumer Protection

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President Theodore Roosevelt and the progressives made their greatest success in the fields of conservation and consumer protection. Not many people would stand against them, making them successful. Roosevelt stood against greater opposition on the other progressive issues that could have been more prosperous, yet were not so widely accepted.

Conservation did have problems, for Roosevelt and Pinchot both believed that the resources of the nation should be used wisely. Pinchot believed that wilderness was waste. However Theodore Roosevelt realized that one of the nations resources that had to be saved for posterity was wilderness. He helped organize national parks that still exist today, such as Yosemite National Park. Muir of the Sierra Club believed in this in a “spare-that-tree” way and stood against the Hetch Hetchy dam affair that Pinchot supported. This controversy is still debatable to this date.

After loosing his stomach for sausage due to reading Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle, Theodore Roosevelt helped to spur the National Food and Drug Association, and meat packing inspection. Relatively few people would argue with meat packing inspection regulations after being introduced to conditions described by Sinclair’s muckraking. Muckraking helped to alert the people of the country of corruption all around them. Although its content would be treated like the scandal reveling investigative reporting seen today, it played a crucial role in the safety of many people. Theodore Roosevelt read The Jungle proving its value for all meat consumers to read and soon find meat unpalatable.

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