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that they may know the properties, and the effects upon the human body, and that they may know why alcohol has this certain influence upon the human body. Third, and most important: That these narcotics, especially alcohol, tobacco, and opium, upon the human body; what they do and why they do it. Now, with your indulgence, I shall hope to offer a few suggestions in answer to these two questions, what shall we teach and how shall we teach it, with some very simple experiments. I have gone to the extreme of simplicity in order to avoid the objections which come from so many teachers who say: "I have had no practice in any laboratory. I am situated in a school where very few, if any, appliances are given to me. I wish to present that which can be used by every man and woman in every schoolhouse in this land; requiring no previous laboratory work, requiring no great outlay or expense. Of course in those schools which are more favorably situated, more advanced experiments may be conducted; but I intend to present those experiments which will give a sufficient knowledge of the effects on the human body, so that if it is taught rightly the children will be saved. Now, in this work, so far as I can show it before such a large audience, I will leave the subject of general physiology, and come directly to the subject of narcotics, their origin, their properties, and uses, and what they do to the human body; and I have selected for their principal work,
I.-ORIGIN OF ALCOHOL.
1.-In fermented liquors.
Experiment 1. Add molasses to water in a bottle till it is of a deep brown color, then add a teaspoonful of yeast; allow it to stand in a warm place for a day or two. Observation: The mixture has the odor of alcohol, later a sour, acid odor; the mixture has a sharp taste. Inference: The little yeast has changed the sugar of the molasses to alcohol; this will change to acid if left alone. Call the yeast plant a "ferment," and the process of changing "fermentation."
Experiment 2. Allow apple juice to stand exposed to the air for a few days. Observation: The liquid has the odor of alcohol, also the biting taste. Later it has a sour, acid taste like vinegar. Inference: Very small ferments from the air have changed the sugar of the apple juice to alcohol. Call the liquid "cider." The alcohol will change to vinegar if left exposed to the air.
Cider is formed by the fermentation of apple juice in the air.
Ales and beers are formed by the fermentation of the sugar of grains. (Malt liquors.)
Alcohol is an essential constituent of all these fermented liquors; nature will change it to an acid if left to itself.
2.-In distilled liquors.
Experiment 3. Heat cider or wine in a test tube over an alcohol lamp; rass the steam through a glass tube into a bottle which is wrapped in a wet cloth to condense this steam. Observation: The odor and taste are more marked than in the fermented liquors; often there is a bitter taste. Inference: The condensed liquor is stronger than the fermented liquor and is changed into new substances oftentimes. Call this process of evaporating and condensing "distillation," and the resulting liquid a “distilled liquor.”
Brandy is distilled from wines.
Gin is distilled from beer and flavored with juniper berries.
II. PROPERTIES AND USES OF ALCOHOL.
Experiment 4. Examine alcohol for its color, odor, and taste. Place a little on the hand. Observation: Alcohol is a transparent liquid, has a strong odor, and a biting taste. Inference: The rapid evaporation of the alcohol makes the hand feel cool-it is a volatile liquid.
Experiment 5. Place a little in a spoon: apply a lighted match. Observation: It burns in a blue; hot flame. Inference: Alcohol is inflammable because it unites easily with the oxygen of the air.
Experiment 6. Shake a little powdered resin in alcohol. Observation: The alcohol changed to the color of the `resin; finally the resin disappears. Inference: Some resinous substances are soluble in alcohol.
Experiment 7. Mix a little oil of turpentine with alcohol; shake. Observation: The turpentine mixes with the alcohol. Inference: Alcohol will mix with some oils.
Experiment 8. Add alcohol to the white of an egg (albumen). Observation: The albumen changes the moist, mucilaginous albumen to a white, stringy solid. Call this "coagulation." Inference: Alcohol coagulates albuminous substances by extracting the water from them.
Properties.-Alcohol is a transparent liquid, odorous, has biting taste, is volatile. It dissolves many resinous substances, and mixes with most oils. It is inflammable, has great affinity for oxygen. It coagulates albumen, has attraction for water. Uses (resulting from these properties), external application to allay inflammation. Alcoholic lamps for heating purposes. A solvent for gums in preparing varnishes. In preparation of perfumery, medicines, etc. Preservation of museum specimens.
III.-EFFECTS OF ALCOHOL ON THE HUMAN BODY.
1.-Alcohol impairs digestion.
Experiment 9. Place with the finger a little alcohol on the inside membrane of the mouth (a mucous membrane); repeat this several times. Observation: The membrane stings, the saliva flows freely, finally there is a dry, puckery feeling. Inference: Alcohol inflames the membrane, excites the flow of the liquid which it secretes, and absorbs the moisture in it.
Application.-The lining membrane of the mouth also lines the stomach and the other organs of the digestive system. A small amount of alcohol will cause a profuse flow of the gastric juice and pass very rapidly into the blood. A larger amount inflames and irritates the lining membrane of the stomach. A continued use weakens the quality of the gastric juice by the unusual and irregular flow, also impoverishes the blood from which it comes. It irritates the constantly inflamed membrane of the stomach, leading to an ulcerous condition and chronic inflammation.
Experiment 10. Add alcohol to raw meat, also rub some meat in water till it is well colored with blood, add alcohol to this blood. Observation: The liquid is full of white particles and the meat seems hard. Inference: The alcohol has coagulated the albumen of the meat and blood.
Experiment 11. Add alcohol to some of the pepsin of the gastric juice. Observation: The pepsin contains white, stringy particles. Inference: Alcohol coagulates pepsin.
NOTE.-To prepare the pepsin get from the butcher the inside membrane of a pig's stomach, cut into fine pieces and soak it in glycerine for a few hours. The glycerine dissolves the pepsin; strain through a fine cloth. Prepared pepsin can be bought of the druggist.
Application.-Pepsin is the active solvent of the gastric juice. Alcohol tends to harden the food and coagulate the pepsin, thus retarding digestion. Continued use tends to chronic indigestion and to the intensifying of any disease of the digestive system.
2.-Alcohol absorbs the water of the body.
Refer to experiments 8 and 9. Alcohol not only absorbs water from the albumen which it coagulates, but the whole system floods it with water to dilute it and render it less harmful. Hence alcohol absorbs the water of the saliva, of the gastric juice, of the blood, of the tissues, and of all the secretions. This soon results in a craving for fluid to supply the body, really a "thirst" for water, requiring time for its absorption throughout the system, but temporarily satisfied by more exciting drink.
3.—Alcohol destroys the blood corpuscles.
Experiment 12. Prick with a pin under the finger nail and draw a drop of blood; place this on a bit of glass and examine with a magnifying glass. Observe the way in which the little blood corpuscles are arranged. Touch them with the smallest amount of alcohol. Observation: The corpuscles are of an
'I would never do that or teach others to.-M. H. Hunt.
irregular shape and have lost part of their color. Add more alcohol. Observation: The corpuscles are an irregular mass of a whitish color. Inference: Alcohol coagulates the albumen of the corpuscles and dissolves the coloring mat ter. Refer also to experiment 5.
Application.-Alcohol at once enters the blood, seizes the oxygen that the red corpuscles are carrying to the various parts of the body, dissolves the coloring matter, and coagulates the albumen of these corpuscles; hence the blood partially fails in its work of carrying new matter to the tissues and in eliminating the waste matter. The result is a clogging of the system with effete matter, poisoning of the blood, diseases of the skin, liver, and kidneys. The retarding of the combustion within the body lowers its temperature in direct proportion to the amount of alcohol taken.
4.-Alcohol ruins the blood vessels.
Observe the crust of earthy matter on the inside of bottles of grape wine. Inference: The earth matter which was soluble in the grape juice is thrown down by the alcohol in the wine.
Application. The mineral matter is being carried by the blood to the bones, is precipitated by the alcohol, and forms a crust in the blood vessels and in all the tissues, making them weak and brittle. As a result blood vessels burst nnder any unusual strain, and apoplexy results.
5.-Alcohol paralyzes nerve matter. (A narcotic.)
Experiment 13. Etherize or chloroform a frog by soaking a wad of cotton and putting it in his mouth, or place a spoonful of ether in a jar of water and immerse the frog. When insensible carefully cut upon the skin and flesh of the leg till the nerve is exposed. Touch a drop of alcohol to the exposed nerve. Observation: The nerve becomes stiff and white, the trembling of the limb ceases. Inference: Alcohol has paralyzed the live nerve matter.
Application.-A small dose of alcohol causes incipient paralysis of the nerves of the tissues and brain; this causes an extra activity for the purpose of diluting and expelling the poison from the system, manifested by the "animated appearance, the throbbing of the arteries, the flush of the face, and the sparkle of the eye." This paralysis also numbs any feelings of pain, apparent benefits arising from previous paralysis. The paralysis of the nerves controlling the muscular walls of the capillaries weakens their elasticity, at the same time the heart increases its action, hence the blood tends to remain near the surface, and an extra radiation of heat takes place, a second reason for the lower temperature of the body.
Increase the dose and the paralysis of the brain increases in this order: First, of the delicate nerve matter of the superior brain (cerebellum), blunting the highest functions, reverence, modesty, love, etc., its reflex action is the loss of control of the connecting nerves, thus moral power fails and the lower nature is supreme; second, the part of the brain controlling voluntary motion is paralyzed, and also that part which is said to preside over the thoughts (cerebrum), at the same time the nerves are paralyzed, resulting in an insensibility to pain and injury-this goes on till a person is "dead drunk;" third, the last part of the nervous system affected is that which controls the involuntary actions, breathing, etc.-this paralysis causes death.
Continued use leads to a degeneracy of nerve matter and tissue by the constant paralysis and repair, because the structure of the nerve matter is changed, hence "disorders occasioned by the strain imposed on the system, diseases traceable to the general degeneration of the system, and diseases which might otherwise be averted or resisted;" finally the insatiable demand for alcohol: diseases of the nerve, delirium, and death.
This extra exertion of the organs tends to weaken them, which accounts for the fact you are all familiar with, namely, that when a person is taken with a serious disease and is brought to the hospital the first thing the physician or surgeon who comes to him says is: Has this person been using alcohol? Yes; and he shakes his head. There is a question about that. That extra exertion of those organs which has been going on eliminating poison from that man makes it impossible for those organs to resist the terrible strain of a new disThe physician says to another: Has this person used alcoholic liquors? No. Then we will try to pull him through. Those organs have not been exerted under that terrible strain. Now the effect on this nerve matter of pulling
it down, paralyzing it to-day, then mending it, pulling it down, and to-morrow mending it, paralyzing it a little more the next day, and mending it again, changes the constitution of that nerve matter so that it gets into what we call a diseased condition. And there is a second reason for this terrible thirst that comes over a man. Such thirst that nothing, as he says, in heaven or earth will stop him in getting that liquor; and why? Because of the changed condition of that nerve matter, and it looks as if there was no remedy for him. Surely it is a terrible condition for a man to reach.
Now, without going further, I think I have made the points that I desire: That in teaching these points we should lay the foundation on simple experiments (with substances which are the same or similar to those of the human body), performed by the pupils themselves. That, I say, should be the foundation. Then we should apply these facts and explain the action on the human body. This may be supplemented by reading, not from one book, but from many books, of the effects, which can not be shown by simple experiments, but which are the result of difficult scientific experiments and of medical experience.
Now let me leave these thoughts with you: Teach very carefully out of a full knowledge of the subject; discriminatingly, not with exaggeration, but for the purpose of finding the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. Teach scientifically, according to the principles of the very best science, basing the work upon experiments in the hands of the pupils. Teach impressively. As I said at first a person may know all about these facts that I have presented and yet go right on doing just the same thing as before. The lessons should be taught in such a way by the teacher as to bring conviction and decision to the minds of each one of the children. Any teacher that fails to reach that point has failed in moving the wills of the children. Teach for the sake of developing right habits and good character.
III. THE LEGISLATION EFFECTED.
The following table shows what States have enacted compulsory temperance education laws and gives the principal features of the different laws:
Table showing the States having temperance education laws; also the date of enactment and the chief requirements of the different laws, as compiled by Mary H. Hunt.
Explanation of marks.
× The cross signifies that scientific temperance is a mandatory study in public schools. (Column 3.)
The star signifies a penalty attached to the enforcing clause of this statute in the State or Territory to which it is affixed. (Column 4.)
The dagger signifies that the study is not only mandatory, but is required of all pupils in all schools. (Column 5.)
The double dagger signifies that the study is required of all pupils in all schools and is to be pursued with text-books in the hands of pupils able to read. (Column 6.)
The parallel indicates that the study is to be taught in the same manner and as thoroughly as other required branches. (Column 7.)
The section mark indicates that text-books on this topic used in primary and intermediate schools must give one-fourth their space to temperance matter and those used in high schools not less than 20 pages. (Column 8.)
The paragraph indicates that no teacher who has not passed a satisfactory examination in this subject is granted a certificate or authorized to teach. (Column 9.) The States in italics have no temperance education law.
a Amended 1886.
Under United States law. Idaho and Wyoming have since continued the same provisions in their State codes.
a Date of original law; a more stringent one enacted in 1891.
b Amended 1886.
c Under United States law. Idaho and Wyoming have since contained the same provisions in their State codes.
JV. THE ENFORCEMENT OF TEMPERANCE EDUCATION LAWS.-
The Alabama law of 1885 required that "instruction shall be given all pupils in all schools and colleges, supported in whole or in part by public money or under State control, in physiology and hygiene, with special reference to the effects of alcoholic drinks, stimulants, and narcotics upon the human system." In 1889, out of 261,667 pupils, 19,211 are reported as studying "physiology and hygiene."
In 1891 a law more rigid in its requirements was enacted.
[From Report of State Superintendent Ira G. Hoitt, 1890.]
Teaching desultory and results inappreciable.-The provision in our law requiring scientific temperance instruction to be given in all grades was adopted by the legislature of 1887.