Thursday, October 24, 2013

Tobaccoism: How Tobacco Kills (1922), by John H. Kellogg, M.D., LL.D., F.A.C.S., An Early Exposé

Tobaccoism: How Tobacco Kills (1922), by John H. Kellogg, M.D., LL.D., F.A.C.S., An Early Exposé: "Tobaccoism, or, How Tobacco Kills
by John H. Kellogg, M.D., LL.D., F.A.C.S.
(Battle Creek, Michigan:
The Modern Medicine Publishing Co, 1922)"

Tobacco, in its various forms, is one of the most mischievous of all drugs. There is perhaps no other drug which injures the body in so many ways and so universally as does tobacco. Some drugs offer a small degree of compensation for the evil effects which they produce; but tobacco has not a single redeeming feature and gives nothing in return for the $1,500,000,000 which it costs the nation annually, besides the 10,000 lives which it probably destroys.
It has long been known to medical men, chemists and pharmacists, that tobacco is one of the most deadly of all the many poisonous plants known to the botanist. Aside from its use by the devotees of the drug, practically its only use by man is for the killing of parasites on livestock, and the destructive pests, both animal and vegetable, which attack our orchards, gardens, and greenhouses.

To please men and to kill parasites are the only uses of tobacco—its ultimate effects are the same in both cases.

How marvelous the ability to so camouflage its venom that millions of men are made to believe harmless a weed which almost every other living creature than man, great and small, recognizes and avoids as a baneful poison!

Alcoholism, the opium habit and tobaccoism, are a trio of poison habits which have been weighty handicaps to human progress during the last three centuries. In the United States, the subtle spell of opium has been broken by restrictive legislation; the grip of the rum demon has been loosened by the Prohibition Amendment to the Constitution, but the tobacco habit [addiction] still maintains its strangle-hold and many millions of victims of tobaccoism daily burn incense to the smoke god.

The battle against alcoholism was won by a campaign of education, the foundation for which was laid by that historic body of eminent men of science, "The Committee of Fifty."

When subjected to the searching scrutiny of these competent and conscientious investigators and tried in the crucible of laboratory research, every one of the pseudo virtues of alcohol vanished in smoke and out of the crucible rose a spectre of suich forbidding aspect, that alcohol, thus stripped of its camouflage, stood naked before the world the hideous demon that it is; and the men and women by when civilization must be saved, if it is saved, set going the campaign of education which culminated in the achievement of a constitutional foundation for prohibition, one of the greatest steps of progress toward Race Betterment ever made.

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