Like many other items from days gone by, paregoric is virtually non-existent in most homes today. But, back in Sandy Point Times, every house would have likely had this miracle drug, of sorts. Paregoric was everywhere. A cure all with a hidden secret.
Wikipedia has a nice amount of info on the subject of paregoric. The most startling to us would be that it contains opium. That’s right, the stuff that is worth millions on the black market and people rob, steal, cheat and murder for has been a household staple for many years!
But, paregoric was used for cough suppression, diarrhea and to help soothe the gums of teething babies. It was also used to help get little babies and children to sleep when nothing else worked. Put some of this liquid on your forefinger and rub it on the gums of the teething child. It was good stuff.
There was always a small bottle of paregoric in the cabinet next to the liniment, camphor, iodine, mercurochrome and Vicks Vapor Rub. There was usually some black salve used for treating ring worm there as well. Most of those are gone now, too.
Attitudes change about things and people and places. That’s often a good thing. It’s also apparent that we often have lived by that “what we don’t know won’t hurt us” philosophy, even if it is not true. Paregoric containing some opium didn’t matter to most folks back in the day any more than Coca Cola containing cocaine! No one had yet told us it was that bad! Use it and enjoy the benefits!
In life, it often is true as we see so many times. Like, the barbeque chicken at the church social with a secret wine sauce basting. The teetotalers loved it!
If Thomas Jefferson wanted to be in politics today he wouldn’t make it. He had affairs with the help. Eisenhower would not have been European Commander and President because he had a mistress. As did Roosevelt, our longest serving President. She had an adjoining room at the Little White House in Warm Springs. And the darling of all presidents, perhaps, Kennedy, had visits from many of the Hollywood movie stars, including Marilyn Monroe. Ted Kennedy, of course, drowned his girlfriend in Chappaquiddick but he would be OK today as he was a Liberal. There had to be a good explanation why he left her there to drown.
Many of God’s workers in the Old Testament had serious flaws and failings but were used to carry out God’s work. Moses, while remembered for his great accomplishments, is often forgotten for throwing the 10 Commandment tablets down and breaking them. And, he was not allowed in the Promised Land with all of his good works: just for hitting a rock with a stick.
Mr. Clinton‘s wife has “forgiven” him, time after time, it seems. My guess is she didn’t care that much to start with just like the folks eating the wine sauce covered chicken at the church chicken barbeque.
Yep, with all of its miracle effects, paregoric gets a bad rap today. But, back in Sandy Point, it was a reliable home remedy. Maybe we should look more at the good that is done by something, or someone, rather than the negligible bad effects. We’d have a lot less teething pains. Flawed people can do many wonderful things. I know: I have known a lot of them and, I may be one myself.