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July 15, 1899


JAMA. 1899;XXXIII(3):167. doi:10.1001/jama.1899.02450550051008

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It is evident that the stock and dairy interests are becoming alarmed at the prospect of wholesale slaughter of their stock by reason of the convictions of the public on the subject of the contagiousness of tuberculosis. It is not wise to disregard this alarm. The community has no better right to inflict unnecessary harm by slaughter of stock than it has to inflict such harm by unwise tolerance of an evil. As a further consideration, the execution of law and, in fact, the law itself can never rise much above the level of public sentiment. Further, the defense of a private interest gains enough by intensity and directness to offset the larger clientele of a public interest. On the other hand, the farmer will eventually suffer enormous loss unless something is done to eradicate this disease. All statistics on the subject show its rapid spread; for example, the slaughter-house

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