The recent editorial in which a writer for the Boston American...

Boston American

The recent editorial in which a writer for the Boston American and other newspapers advocated a National Department of Health and denounced some of the citizens who oppose that project, furnished an apt illustration of the truism that a weak position can be neither concealed nor supported by violent words. In fact, the editorial in question, besides disclosing a marked lack of pertinent information, was not even self-consistent. The writer of the editorial explicitly said, "The public would not for a moment tolerate a law telling the people to adopt and submit themselves to treatment by any medical school, allopathic or otherwise."

In spite of this explicit statement, most of the editorial was given to an insistence upon compulsory medication. Again, the writer in question said, "A national bureau of health would be chiefly advisory, answering questions, spreading information, preventing the spread of contagious diseases." Yet the purposes thus stated are those of the existing United States Public Health Service. That is the business of an existing bureau, as shown by its annual reports and by title LVIII of the United States Compiled Statutes, 1918.

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