It is my firm resolve to plead with Vegetarians to open their eyes to the plain fact, that the results of Vegetarian propaganda are a comparative failure; compared to its importance, it has made no progress. There must be a cause for this; let us all join hands in an effort to discover it. My suggestion and claim, that cereals and pulses are the great stumbling-block - the scorpion which we have been hugging as it stings - demands an earnest investigation of the foundation and reasonings on which this claim is based, rather than a resort to personalities and invective. If it shall be proven, as I believe, that the starch foods are the bete-noir of Vegetarianism, as well as of the race, and if the abandonment of these foods leads the race back to health, then Vegetarianism - opposition to taking the life of animals - will make rapid progress, and there will be ushered in a reign of real humaneness, to man and animals alike.

If readers of the Vegetarian will carefully read the quotations I have made from Dr. Evans' "How to Prolong Life," and also the remarks I have made thereon, and will then carefully read Mr. Hills' criticism in the Vegetarian of June 28th, page 409, I am quite content to rest my case.

(1) It will be remembered that the reason why I discard cereals from my dietary is not primarily from fear of earthy deposits, as has been before pointed out; it is because many serious and sometimes malignant diseases are directly traceable to starch foods, as is shown by the fact that these diseases are uniformly either cured or greatly modified by abstaining from these foods.

(2) The fact that the exclusion of starch foods explains the phenomena of striking cures from a meat diet, is another argument in favour of the exclusion of cereals.

(3) The success of the "grape cure," "whey cure," and "milk cure" establishments is accounted for when it is noted that these establishments exclude all starch foods, and administer those adapted to stomach digestion.

(4) It is admitted by all scientists that the cereals are a man-developed product, the result of civilisation. Primal man, having no cereals or vegetables to resort to, must have depended for food upon those nuts and fruits spontaneously produced by nature; and these foods are substantially free from starch. The development of cereals and starch vegetables, on the one hand, and the diseases of civilisation on the other, point to the one as the cause of the other.

{5) The long-armed ape is the animal most like man, offering a striking resemblance in many ways, its skeleton and teeth being scarcely distinguishable from that of man; this animal lives on nuts and fruits, and not on any product having any similarity to the cereals.

(6) A still stronger argument is found in the fact that the albumenoid element in nuts, the grape sugar in fruits, and the chief nutritive elements in eggs, milk, and cheese, are adapted to stomach digestion; whilst the cereals abound in starch, which cannot be digested in the stomach, but must await the protracted and laborious process of intestinal digestion.

(7) The most convincing, important, and overwhelming argument is found in the fact that all persons at all out of health have only to try the exclusion of cereals from their dietary, to find immediate, continuous, and permanent improvement in health.

(8) It is quite true that Dr. Evans makes, as I think, a clear demonstration that cereals are most apt of all foods to induce earthy deposits in the system, and thereby cause ossification of the joints and tissues, arterial obstruction, inadequate nutrition of the brain and the entire system, and the resultant decrepitude and premature death. Many readers have received the impression that the tendency of cereals to make earthy deposits is the strongest argument against their use.

The seven reasons stated above had entirely converted my mind to the conviction that cereals must be excluded from human food, as the first and most important step towards overcoming the diseases of modern life, before I had any conviction whatever as to the importance of this eighth or Dr. Evans' reason mentioned above. I was and am much pleased with this additional and confirmatory reason, proving that cereals must be excluded from human food before health and longevity can be obtained; but the argument most apt to make headway, in my opinion, lies in the fact that nearly all persons are out of health, and if they will substitute fruit, with eggs, milk, and cheese, for starch foods, they are quite sure to reap signal benefits; whereas the ossification that Dr. Evans has pointed out does not usually take place until after middle life, and so many years are required to make a practical proof that human nature is apt to tire of the effort.

Mr. Hills writes: "I am profoundly convinced that Dr. Densmore is making a most lamentable mistake; with the best of motives, he is introducing most dangerous doctrines." There has never been a new truth offered that did not, at the outset, receive this kind of opposition. I am unable to sympathise with this state of mind. The agitation of thought is the beginning of wisdom; this is the only path to progress. The outlook, from the point of view of these "dangerous doctrines," is very different. For every Vegetarian in England, there are two to be found who have been Vegetarians, but who have felt constrained to give it up. The London Vegetarian Society, chiefly through the untiring and self-sacrificing efforts of Mr. Hills, has now for some years made herculean efforts in propaganda; money has flowed like water, and many enthusiastic workers and speakers have been untiring in their efforts. With what results ? A number of converts to Vegetarianism are made in each winter's campaign, an equal number fall away before the year is out. Vegetarians are more confined to starch foods than they were before conversion, and are after backsliding. This is so apparent, that a correspondent in the Times some years since suggested that Vegetarianism ought to be called Cerealism. This greater use of the cereals has counterbalanced the benefits derived from other sources.

It is my belief that the substitution of fruit for bread and starch foods will remove from Vegetarianism its great stumbling-block; and then the converts made in a winter's campaign will in time become centres of propaganda; Vegetarianism "will grow on what it feeds on," all its devotees will take heart and rejoice; the gospel of clean living, health, and humanity will overspread the earth, which shall blossom as the rose; and every man (and woman) will literally sit under his own vine and fig-tree, partaking of their god-given fruits, and rejoicing in a life freed from pain and decrepitude, and filled with overflowing happiness and usefulness.

And the anti-cereal food crusade is not confined to Vegetarianism. Thousands who have no ear for food reform, but who are suffering from illness, will be induced to exclude cereals and vegetables from their diet; they will receive such benefits, that they will see that the food question is of great importance, and, through the influence of these "dangerous doctrines," will be led to abstain from flesh of all kinds; this, in turn, will lessen the killing and suffering of animals, and thus will make the heart of every Vegetarian to rejoice, whether he be a devotee of the god of Health or of Mercy.