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The Clarence Dennis Papers

Letter from Clarence Dennis to Maurice B. Visscher pdf (145,200 Bytes) transcript of pdf
Letter from Clarence Dennis to Maurice B. Visscher
Item is a photocopy.
Number of Image Pages:
2 (145,200 Bytes)
1967-05-15 (May 15, 1967)
Dennis, Clarence
Visscher, Maurice B.
University of Minnesota Medical School
This item is in the public domain. It may be used without permission.
Exhibit Category:
Building a Department of Surgery at SUNY Downstate Medical Center, 1951-1972
Box Number: 19
Folder Number: 24
Unique Identifier:
Document Type:
Letters (correspondence)
Physical Condition:
Series: Professional Activities, 1931-2003
SubSeries: National Society for Medical Research, 1962-1987
Folder: [General Business], 1966-1987
May 15, 1967
Dear Maurice:
As a result of the conversation which you and I had by telephone on Wednesday, May 10, 1967, I made the following statement to the business meeting of the American Surgical Association on May 13.
The National Society for Medical Research is relieved that legislation resulting from the 89th Congress is no worse that 89-544, but is acutely aware that the antivivisectionists, with what several congressmen consider the most powerful lobby of the past decade, do not intend to stop short of severe restrictions on our use of experimental animals. It is the opinion of Dr. M. B. Visscher, President of the National Society for Medical Research, that we shall have perhaps a year of grace before momentum will develop toward attempted passage of such legislation and that this period of grace be used for careful education of all citizens, but especially of congressman and legislators, concerning the importance of animal experimental work for clinical progress.
It is the consensus of the Board of Directors that the Rogers-Hill-Javits bill, while containing no single items to which we can take vigorous exception, nonetheless requires the establishment of such a complex committee system as to take so much time of investigators as to pose an obstacle to research. In other words, it is regarded as harassment of the scientists and as such should not be passed.
The National Society for Medical Research requests the following:
1. That the American Surgical Association make public its support of the National Society for Medical Research and the National Society for Medical Research's objections in regard to public education through mention whenever news releases are appropriate and through communications to congressmen and state legislators.
2. That the American surgical Association and its membership use every possible opportunity to educate the public and lawmakers as to the fundamental humanity of animal research and as to the importance of such research to clinical progress.
3. That the membership list of the American Surgical Association be placed upon the mailing list of the National Society for Medical Research in order that all of us may receive current information of value in such pursuits.
I was hesitant to include the matter of an increase in the American Surgical Association's contribution for fear that it might stir up enough opposition to defeat the whole business and therefore asked Dr. George Clowes if he would make such a proposal at a later stage of the business meeting. Dr. Clowes, at my suggestion, proposed that the contribution of the American Surgical Association be increased from $300 a year to $600 a year.
Both of these measures passed without objection.
As a beginning, I am sending a copy of the list of members to Dr. Kingman for addition to his mailing list. I suspect there may be some overlap between this list and some previous ones which I have sent to Dr. Kingman that will need to be crossed out to avoid duplication.
Very sincerely yours,
Clarence Dennis, M.D.
Professor & Chairman
Department of Surgery
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