If it reaches him, Governor Campbell should veto Senate...

Houston (Tex.) Chronicle

If it reaches him, Governor Campbell should veto Senate Bill No. 26. This is the anti-Christian Science bill. It is not so entitled, but while it purports to be "An act to repeal chapter 12 of the General Laws of Texas, passed by the Twenty-seventh Legislature, page 12, Laws of 1901, and to pass in lieu thereof this act, to create a board of medical examiners for the examination and licensing of all physicians, surgeons, and obstetricians; to prescribe their qualifications; to provide for their proper registration, the revocation of their licenses for flagrant offenses; and to fix suitable penalties for illegal practice," the meat in the cocoanut is in section 13, reading: "Any person shall be regarded as practising medicine within the meaning of this act who shall publicly profess to be a physician or surgeon; shall treat or offer to treat any disease, deformity, or injury by any system or method, and charge therefor, directly or indirectly, money or other compensation." The "system" aimed at is that of Christian Science.

Now the State has the right to regulate the practice of medicine and surgery. As to physical treatment of disease it has full jurisdiction, supervision, and control, and can properly make any regulatory laws deemed proper by the Legislature. But spiritual cures and treatment are a matter of religion, the perfect freedom of which is guaranteed by the Constitution. An attempt has been made against Christian Science in Texas before, and unsuccessfully. It has also been attacked in many other States with the same result. In 1904 Congress, in the bill regulating the practice of medicine in Indian Territory, specifically exempted Christian Science after investigation.

Christian Scientists are free American citizens. They are entitled to have Christian Science treatment if they want it. It is undemocratic, un-American, and contrary to the genius of Texas law to interfere with individual liberty. Particularly to be reprehended is the endeavor to prohibit Christian Science practice indirectly. If any legislators believe such legislation wise, let it be direct. Our laws should be so plain that he who runs may read, since ignorance of the law excuses no one. The indirect law is always a bad one.

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