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The New York Times July 17, 1914


It comes as a jolt to some of us to have paregoric at length put in stocks and pillory. We have not been deaf to the charges latterly brought against it. We know that it is no longer customary. In fact, we even shudder at the thought of giving it to our own innocent youngsters. But to have it publicly held up as the instrument for criminals and a thing to be prohibited by law awakens associations that will not be downed.

In the midst of our enlightenment, we cannot but regret the passing of paregoric. It has been an institution --- one vastly more pleasant than its twin survivor, castor oil. Moreover, it has been the firm foundation for the jokes of half a century, second only to those about mother-in-law. We realize that some regrets are frankly immoral; that they fly in the face of all intelligence, and that all up-to-date mothers would rate us severely for them. We ourselves must feel a thrill of horror that babies should once have had paregoric and a thrill of relief that Boylan laws will now forbid it them. Only, in the midst of the thrills comes the realization that we were the babies who had the paregoric.

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