What Is “The March of the Flag” by Albert Beveridge About?

“The March of the Flag” is about Albert Beveridge’s espousal and promotion of American imperialism. In it, he puts forth that whites are the master race and God’s chosen people and bear the unique privilege and responsibility of exercising rule over foreign peoples and lands, according to Fordham University.

The foundational belief expressed in “The March of the Flag” is that white Christians are superior to people of other races and religious backgrounds. Beveridge expressed his belief that white, Christian Americans were in fact morally obligated to expand their superior knowledge, religion and ideals to the rest of the world. He asked rhetorically: “Has God endowed us with gifts beyond our deserts and marked us as the people of His peculiar favor, merely to rot in our own selfishness…?”

Beveridge supported his stance using Biblical references, which he evokes a total of 11 times. He believed that territorial expansion of the United States was a divine providence set in motion by the progressive politics of Theodore Roosevelt, whom Beveridge supported during Roosevelt’s bid for the presidency. He was the chairman and keynote speaker of the Progressive Party convention at which Roosevelt received his nomination.

Beveridge was an Indiana-born lawyer who became a Senator, orator, biographer and Pulitzer Prize winner. He first attracted political attention with his eloquent speeches advocating U.S. expansion overseas and increased federal power. He ran for the Senate as a member of the Republican party in 1898 and used “The March of the Flag” as his campaign speech.