But this is not all. The training and education of a soldier tend to make a man keenly sensitive on the point of honor, and to feel a stain on his professional reputation like a wound.
Observe the way in which the Administration has dealt with him. First, he was made general-in-chief of all the armies of the United States
, then reduced to the command of the Army of the Potomac, then degraded to the post of a quartermaster at Alexandria
, then suddenly and in fright made commander of the Army of the Potomac once more, then dismissed from that command as unceremoniously and abruptly as one flings a torn envelope into a waste-paper basket; and all within a single year.
Such capricious changes are more like the shifting scenes of a novel or drama than like real life.
But, wounding as such treatment must have been, we hear no complaint from General McClellan
He makes no appeal to the public, no protest against injustice, no demand for sympathy.
If any expressions of impatience are wrung from him, it is because of his army, and not because of any thing done to, or suffered by, himself.
He submits in silence to the will of the Administration; he discharges faithfully the duties of every position devolved upon him; he asks only for the privilege of serving his country.
During the long period of his enforced idleness, not one word of complaint has been heard from him: he has made no proclamation of his wrongs, no denunciation of those who have wronged him. Yet this is not an age of self-renunciation and self-sacrifice:--