Newspapers and New Thought [excerpt]
THE press of this country, while pretending to educate and lead
the public, seldom exerts any part of its unquestioned influence
in beneficial channels. Its loud voice is raised in praise of this
or that politician, and, alas! too often you will find its editorial
utterances exploiting some patent medicine nostrum, because the
vender of the so-called “medicine” patronizes the advertising columns
of the aforesaid newspaper. The readers who really support these
papers are apparently considered by their editors and proprietors
as proper prey for any scheming advertiser who will pay them their
price for advertising space.
Therefore, you seldom see in one of
these papers an article setting forth the results of some simple
cure. If medicine does anything that is claimed to be out of the
ordinary, such, for instance, as killing the germs of consumption
by poisoning them with their own virus, the editors will devote
pages of gush to the methods and the marvelous results. When a man
goes out into the wilderness and with Nature’s aid alone performs
a miracle upon himself, it is dismissed with curt notice, if any;
for there is no money in such methods of treatment, and the news
value of such an item is proportionately small.
Once in a while, however, a newspaper
gives, in small compass, accounts of events that ought to teach
a lesson of value to their readers. They emphasized such a lesson
when, during the late President’s course of treatment, at Buffalo,
they showed how the attendant doctors were pushing him toward eternity
by constant feeding. They have clinched the conviction of those
doctors since the event, by furnishing divers accounts of similar
cases that have come to light all over the country wherein the treatment
was different, and results not fatal.
The following report, printed in a
California paper, is worth comparing with the report of the Buffalo
“Ray Hecock, shot in the abdomen,
sustains twenty-eight intestinal perforations—Will probably recover.
“On Saturday, September 14, young
Hecock was accidentally shot by a 22-caliber rifle. The bullet entered
the abdomen three inches below the navel, one inch to the right
of the median line. The family physician, was called.
“The lad was placed upon the operating
table seven hours after the infliction of the wound.
“The small intestine was found to
be pierced in twenty-eight places. One piece thirteen inches in
length contained thirteen punctures. This section was removed entirely
and the ends of the intestine joined by a Murphy button. The remainder
of the twenty-eight punctures were sewed up in the usual manner.
The bullet was not found, and is still lodged somewhere in the boy’s
“The operation lasted two hours. Absolutely
no food of any kind was given the patient by the mouth until after
the eighth day. On that day six teaspoonfuls of hot water were given
in divided doses. Between the eighth and thirteenth days small quantities
of beef juice and  hot water
were administered. The Murphy button passed on the tenth day.
“Gradually the patient’s condition
improved, until now his temperature and pulse are normal, and he
is eating freely of solid food.”
The following excerpt from the Chicago
Daily News touches upon a similar case reported from Chicago:
“What is known as the ‘McKinley
case’ is in St. Elizabeth’s Hospital—a patient suffering from gunshot
wounds identical with those inflicted upon the late President McKinley.
The case is that of Peter Arp, a laborer, 41 years of age, who on
September 21 attempted to commit suicide. He shot himself through
the left lung and both walls of his stomach.
“Determined to die, Arp made his case
worse two days after he was operated on by tearing open his wounds
and racing through the halls of the hospital in another effort to
“No solid food has yet been given
the man, although he has been there nearly two weeks.
“When the man was brought to the hospital
on the Saturday he shot himself he was in a state of utter collapse
and almost pulseless. An examination revealed two bullet wounds
at the sixth rib. One had passed into the body, as in the case of
McKinley, and the other had flattened and glanced, making a mere
flesh wound. The patient was operated upon at once.
“Instead of closing the wounds made
by the operation, as was done in the President’s case, the surgeons
left them open to prevent the formation of gangrene or pus.
“Arp’s only complaint is, that he
is hungry and wants some meat to eat.”
A few months ago you would not have
seen an article of this kind in a public newspaper, but they are
trying to catch up with the procession. Generally they stick such
news items away down at the bottom of a column, almost out of sight,
where their big patent medicine advertisers cannot complain about
its prominence. Such items are cropping up thick, as the results
of this magazine’s mission broaden, and more and more people take
up the practice of the simple rules of hygiene, that insure recovery
from diseased conditions, and act as safeguards against weakness