Is it just me, or are you freaked out at the notion of 32,000 Americans taking anthrax antibiotics, whether they need them or not?

Yes, those are the latest CDC statistics. As usual, the ‘gummint’ seems to be having it both ways. While warning the public not to buy antibiotics online because of possible victimization, inferior products and health risks, the feds are also whipping us into an anti-anthrax frenzy:

“Consumers visiting Web sites and receiving e-mail claiming to sell Ciprofloxacin (Cipro) and other antibiotics to treat anthrax should” be aware, before they buy these pharmaceuticals online, that “fraudsters often follow the headlines, tailoring their offers to prey on consumers’ fears and vulnerabilities.”

I’ll say.

Day after day, despite reading these ‘scare’ headlines and seeing thousands of people needlessly on antibiotics, I am convinced there are alternatives.

I learn, for example, that Anthrax can be treated homeopathically, says Erika N. Price, DHM, a specialist in Gulf-War Syndrome: “The remedy is Anthracinium.(the Anthrax Nosode). Recommend 200c potency as a one time dose for those in a situation in which they may be exposed. [Much like a vaccination.] If actually exposed, the 200c should be taken once daily or as needed per the individual case. Follow with full case taking of the patient’s specific symptoms [by a professional] and follow-up remedies can be prescribed.”

After I see this intriguing statement – “According to some medical experts, garlic may be just as effective as Cipro and far safer for fighting infection by anthrax” in “9 Unpopular Ideas about 9/11,” by the brilliant radical journalist Robert Lederman, I decide to explore the feasibility of using safe, effective natural remedies and healing alternatives, to build up our immune systems in advance of exposure to catastrophic disease.

In his widely circulated special report, “How to Prepare for Biological Armageddon,” controversial crusading health journalist and consumer advocate Bill Sardi contends that naturally occurring remedies such as garlic and oregano oil provide potent protection against biological weapons such as anthrax.

“The public is being left empty handed,” Bill Sardi charges, “and they want to know what to do to boost their immune system and to kill off unfriendly bacteria. When doctors and hospitals are not accessible, and antibiotic drugs are not available, these natural remedies provide a third-line of defense against biological toxins.”

“Americans need to eat some dirt,” says my herbalist friend Bruce, who trained under herbal wise-woman Susun Weed. “How else can we build up immunity to anything, when we’re in our over-sanitized cubicles?”

Good point.

So I consult Susun Weed herself, the canny, charismatic Woodstock, N.Y., herbal healer. A contributor to the Routledge International Encyclopedia of Women’s Studies and the author of four highly acclaimed herbal medicine handbooks, she has been in the forefront of the herbal renaissance for 35 years.

In “Anthrax Fear: Combat Biological Terror with Immune System Strengthening Herbal Remedies,” her anti-bacterial recommendations include spraying inside the nose with saline solution or yarrow tincture; inhaling the aroma of garlic tea; ingesting various dosages of cayenne, golden seal, echinacea root, usnea, poke root, ginseng.

“My favorite foods for nourishing the immune system,” Susun Weed writes, “include beets, carrots, garlic, medicinal mushrooms, seaweeds and dark leafy greens (including nettle infusion).” For rapid results, she recommends miso soup with seaweed and wild mushrooms, or her wonderful recipe for “Immune A Go Go Soup.”

WND: If someone has anthrax, would herbs and natural remedies work? If so, what? Or should they turn in crisis to Western medicine and the Heroic Tradition?

SUSUN WEED: If someone has a confirmed case of anthrax, it is possible that the correct herbs, taken in the correct dose, could kill the anthrax bacteria and/or deal with the lethal effects it creates. Of course, if one has access to antibiotics, and if one is comfortable with the side effects that antibiotics can cause, then there is no reason to use herbs. If, however, one does not have access to antibiotics, or if there is an allergy to antibiotics, or if one is willing to risk a course of treatment that has not been validated by scientific studies, then herbs could be a life-saver.

Susun Weed issues the following disclaimer: “The information presented here is accurate to the best of our knowledge. Of course, it cannot take the place of a trained healer. Please use your intuition and your wisdom when considering how to best take care of yourself. We cannot be responsible for your choices.”

“Society can create us, or we can create it,” Susun Weed says. “We can use the events of 9-11 to withdraw and feed our fears, or we can use them to go forth and create a culture of compassion. The choice is ours.”

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