A four panel comic strip. Morgan builds a snowman and Terry compliments him on its red Santa costume. The red is blood from Morgan's coughing from asbestos snow.

Asbestos we can hope for

We've been using asbestos for at least 4,500 years. Known for its water and fire resistance, Greeks, Romans, Persians were all familiar with the fibers that "couldn't burn." Marco Polo wrote about it, and Charlemagne was said to rock a tablecloth made of the stuff.

But a link between asbestos and serious illness was found as early as 1899. And by the 1930s, large asbestos companies knew full well their products caused cancer. They marketed boxes of it heavily during the holidays under names like "Magic White," and "Snow Drift."

People sprinkled it around their trees, department stores used it around their window displays, and so, so, so many movies used asbestos for wintery visuals.

Despite being totally banned in 66 countries (including the entire European Union) asbestos remains legal in the United States.

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