By Dr. Mercola
An Inconvenient Tooth, a documentary by Guy Wagner about fluoride, premiered at City Hall in Portland, Oregon on September 6, 2012, the same day a public hearing was held before the five-member City Council about whether or not the city should fluoridate its water supplies.
As reported by The New York Times:1
"Mayor Sam Adams, who backs the fluoridation plan and has one of five votes on the Council, comes firmly down on the side that says Portland must address dental care for everyone if its progressive goals and self-image are valid.
'It's about health equity, it's about social justice,' he said in an interview. 'Fluoride is a means to an end,' he added. 'I hope that folks, whether they agree with me or not, understand that my intentions are to help those Portlanders that have no voice in this process.'
Some opponents of fluoridation have lobbed that kind of reasoning right back into the laps of the commissioners.
'I don't appreciate you trying to alleviate your white guilt by putting toxins in our water,' Frances Quaempts-Miller, who described herself as mixed black and Muscogee Indian, said in testifying at the public hearing before the all-white Council of four men and one woman.
Who is empowered to make the choice for Portland has become part of the debate as well. Fluoridation efforts have failed at the ballot box here, most recently in 1980.
And two other members of the City Council, in addition to Mr. Adams, who is not seeking re-election in November, said even before public testimony was taken that they planned to vote for the plan – making a majority – when it goes before them..."
A Case of "Big Brother Knows Best"?
The undemocratic process adopted by the council received nationwide media coverage, and for good reason. So far, citizens have already voted 'no' on water fluoridation for Portland on three separate occasions, clearly demonstrating the public will on this subject. This time, more than 275 residents testified at the public hearing, according to The New York Times, with more than 60 percent of them speaking out against the practice. The pro-fluoride lobby were unfairly given a full hour to present their case before the council, while those in opposition were given no time.
In the end, on September 12, the council stuck to their announced game plan and approved the plan to add fluoride to Portland's water supplies by March 2014, despite the strong opposition from residents, who asked for a referendum. Their message: "Public Water, Public Vote." According to The Huffington Post,2 the opposition will start collecting signatures in an effort to force a referendum.
"There is no question that we are going to need a lot of financial and volunteer support to make this happen, but we are seeing a major backlash to how the City Council has handled this," said Kim Kaminski, executive director of Oregon Citizens for Safe Drinking Water.3
While it can certainly be frustrating, there's no doubt we need to open the channels of communication on the issue of water fluoridation. The argument that water fluoridation has been done for over five decades and doesn't appear to have had a detrimental impact on health simply isn't not good enough... There's just too much evidence to the contrary. For example, 34 different studies4 support the contention that water fluoridation lowers IQ in children.
In fact, there are many scientific studies showing the direct, toxic effects of fluoride on your brain, thyroid, bones and joints, it's surprising that the fluoridation lobbyists have been so successful in convincing the medical (and dental) communities that fluoride is safe and effective. Most refuse to consider the skyrocketing increase of cognitive decline in adults (Alzheimer's and various dementia's), and behavioral issues in children (ADD, ADHD, depression and learning disabilities of all kinds) and the possible link to fluoride.
One of the central issues though is FREEDOM. Fluoride is not a nutrient. The fluoride put into drinking water is not a prescription drug, but an industrial waste product. However, it is put into the water as a "drug" to help oral health, and it is done without the consent of those receiving it. Even if you accepted the premise that it works systemically, there is no justification to force it on people under the premise of slightly lowering tooth decay as everyone has the option of using it topically as a toothpaste if they so choose.
Please Help Portland's Referendum Campaign
The Portland referendum campaign to give voters the right to decide on fluoride has just 30 days to gather 20,000 valid signatures in order to take the decision out of city council hands and put the issue on the ballot.
They've had an incredible community-wide response, but due to the secretive nature of the city council's actions, they've had very little time to create a political action committee and build a massive volunteer network from the ground up. They've trained over 200 volunteer signature gatherers so far, but they won't be able to succeed on volunteer efforts alone.
They've put together a team of professional signature gatherers with a highly experienced manager. If they can continue paying the team, there's no doubt they will succeed in getting this issue to the ballot. This is where YOU can help.
The campaign is in urgent need of donations to achieve their goal, so please, make a donation at www.cleanwaterportland.org/donate/ to donate today, or send a check to:
Clean Water Portland PAC
408 SE 6th AVE
Portland, OR 97214
What's Driving the Irrational Water Fluoridation Mandates?
I've interviewed Dr. Connett on multiple occasions over the last few years. He's recognized worldwide as a leader in the movement to eliminate fluoride from the municipal water supplies, and I'm pleased to be working with him to achieve this goal. He has previously stated that, with the science we now have on fluoride, the current water fluoridation mandates simply do not make any sense. And if it is to continue, then the authorities must come up with some rational explanations to explain this irrational behavior.
"Teeth are important, but I can't believe that all these governments are mobilized to protect this miniscule amount of saved teeth," he says. "What is the rational explanation for this irrational behavior?"
The answer, in his view, boils down to the need to maintain credibility. If the dental associations, health departments, and/or the Department of Health and Human Services admit they were wrong about fluoridation, it means they will lose credibility. And if they lose credibility on this issue, they stand to lose credibility on other public health policies, such as the childhood vaccination schedule, for example. After all, they must have the public's trust in order to effectively oversee public health policy, and that's part of the reason for why they're fighting so hard to stave this issue off.
The fluoride debate has recently ignited in Canada and New Zealand as well, and there's reason to believe health officials are under the same pressure to save face there too.
Fluoride Issue Too Hot for New Zealand's Royal Society?
In July, the Council of the Royal Society of New Zealand (RSNZ) decided to prepare an advisory paper on the "risks and benefits of the treatment of public reticulated water with fluoride for oral health," and issued a call for information and relevant research for inclusion in the risk-benefit analysis. Interestingly enough, the Society suddenly made an abrupt about-face on the issue.
According to one news report:5
"The RSNZ received information from the Government's $1.25 million lobby group, the NFIS, and from those opposed to fluoridation, notably Fluoride Action Network and the independent NZ Fluoridation Information Service (94 pages, with hundreds of pages of scientific attachments).
Following the 20 August deadline, the RSNZ issued a statement on 31 August that '[following initial evidence gathering, initiated to inform decisions on whether to develop a statement on the risks and benefits of the treatment of public reticulated water with fluoride, t]he Council of the Society has now discussed the matter and decided not to include that topic in its current work program.'"
Not surprisingly, this turnabout has many wondering whether or not "vested interests" may have influenced the Royal Society to take a step back and continue ignoring the issue. According to Mark Atkins with the New Zealand Fluoridation Information Service:6
"...One has to wonder if vested interests prompted the original decision to produce a paper, but the Royal Society realized, on the information received, that it would scientifically have to condemn fluoridation if it proceeded, against the interests of some Panel member organizations, not to mention the Government at large. If so, its easiest way out would be to not proceed with the paper, as now decided, but which was a 'done deal' according to its original request for submissions. Or perhaps it just accepted the task was beyond its resources, as was apparent from my original conversation with the Society's reviewer..."
New Zealand has actually made great strides in the fight against water fluoridation. Last year, articles were published in Organic New Zealand, and Grey Power, a magazine for seniors. Dr. Connett also gave a series of talks to various councils. The talks included the video presentation of Professional Perspectives on Water Fluoridation, which features 15 different scientists who have spent years investigating fluoride.
In June last year, the Ruapehu-Taumarunui District Council confirmed their decision to stop fluoridating their water.7 The town has fluoridated their water supplies for the past 30 years, and their decision came after they had heard from Dr. Connett in person and consulted proponents for their views. Around the same time, the Upper Hutt City council also resolved to lobby Wellington Regional to stop fluoridation, and the council in New Plymouth voted to end their water fluoridation program.
Fluoridation Battle Heats Up in Canada
In related news, city councilors in Cornwall, Canada, also got an earful recently from local citizens who want the city to quit putting fluoride in their drinking water. As reported by Seaway News:8
"While councillors were keeping their cards pretty close to their chest... they did sanction the creation of a report to determine the effects of eliminating fluoride use in our drinking water. Paul Brisebois, a member of Fluoride Free Cornwall, told councillors that the health risks of a 'toxin' like fluorine – which is mixed with other additives to create fluoride and added to drinking water – need to be eliminated.
...[N]ot everyone subscribes to Brisebois' theory. Health officials have noted in the past that fluoride use is supported by more than 90 national and international professional health organizations including Health Canada, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health organization... But critics, including the local group before council, are suggesting fluoride studied by health agencies is different from what is actually used in drinking water. 'It's like saying you're going to test drive a Chevy truck by using a Ford,' said Brisebois."
The issue of what kind of fluoride is actually added to your water is a point of major importance. Many people still do not realize that when scientists study fluoride's toxicity to humans, they study pharmaceutical grade fluoride (same stuff used in antidepressant drugs), but NOT the fluoride compounds actually used for water fluoridation, which include the far more toxic waste materials generated from the fertilizer industry. So, in essence, their already detrimental results may in fact be FAR GREATER than currently perceived.
Phoenix Vows to Re-Examine Health Effects of Water Fluoridation
Citizens in Phoenix, Arizona are also stepping up to the plate on this issue and were recently told a council subcommittee would accept expert testimony on water fluoridation. According to AZCentral:9
"Council members said that after 23 years, it's time to re-examine the health effects and financial impact of the practice. Phoenix spends about $582,000 per year, or about 39 cents per resident, to put fluoride in the water supply."
AZCentral, along with The Arizona Republic hosted a live online chat on September 10, which included Will Humble, director of the Arizona Department of Health Services, and Deborah Dykema, a Phoenix-based osteopathic physician. Highlights of the discussion, which are posted on AZCentral,10 included the following questions and answers:
"Q: Are there any studies showing that fluoride consumption from cereal, milk and soda is sufficient to combat tooth decay?
Dykema: Fluoride is not required for any body processes. It is listed as a toxic element in clinical toxicology journals. It is rated as more toxic than lead and only slightly less toxic than arsenic. Additionally, three courts have disagreed with that statement – Pennsylvania, Illinois and Texas – where they found the artificial fluoridation of water supplies may contribute to cancer, genetic damage and chronic toxicity, and the value of said artificial fluoridation is in doubt. There are many class-action lawsuits and courts that are currently weighing in on this topic and the forced mass-fluoridation issue is being rejected.
Humble: It depends. Depending on a person's diet, they might get to an optimal level through the diet. For example, organic green tea contains a fair amount of fluoride, even without the water. So it depends on the person. At the community level, very few people get the optimal amount of fluoride just through dietary sources.
Q: Would it be easier to let people who want fluoride in their water add it after it is delivered to them?
Humble: It's way easier to get the optimal level into the drinking water at the community level. If people were to estimate how much to add on their own, they'd be very likely to get too much or too little.
Dykema: The burden of proof when forcing mass medication on a population lies with the entity forcing that medication. It is up to the city of Phoenix to provide safety data in both long-term studies and toxicity on hydrofluorosilicic acid, and the fact is these studies have not been done."
Mr. Humble's statement that individuals would be "very likely to get too much or too little" fluoride were they to add it to their own water is ironic in the extreme, considering the fact that this is exactly why it's so dangerous to add it to municipal water supplies. It's impossible to gauge or determine how much fluoride an individual will receive in this way, as water consumption will vary greatly from one individual to the next, and the "ideal dose" (if there were such a thing) will also vary depending on age, physical size, and underlying health issues.
For example, infants (who do not even have teeth yet) who are fed infant formula mixed with fluoridated water receive a disproportionate amount of fluoride compared to breastfed infants and older children and adults.
Fluoridation proponents are finally beginning to acknowledge the susceptibility of infants and young children to excessive fluoride intakes, likely because they can no longer deny the obvious effects that fluoride has on the developing teeth, in the form of dental fluorosis. Nearly 41 percent of adolescents aged 12-15 now have some form of dental fluorosis,11 an outwardly visible sign of fluoride over-exposure and toxicity. And if you can see it on your teeth, just imagine the internal damage you cannot see...
Join the Fight to Get Fluoride Out of Drinking Water
The ADA and CDC are pushing hard to ensure they can mark more cities off their checklist as part of their strategy.
They might as well put the fluoride right into soda, as cavities are caused by sugar and not a fluoride deficiency.
99% of all fluoride added to water ends up on your lawn, down your toilet, into your shower drain, used in washing clothes or dishes - so why on earth would they believe this is the best solution to solve a cavity concern that is typically due to a high sugar diet?
Portland needs some immediate help in challenging this misguided decision. Clean Water Portland is working to collect 20,000 signatures as part of a referendum to ensure the public has the right to vote on this issue. It shouldn't be decided by a few council members under heavy pressure from the ADA and dental professionals.
Please donate to Clean Water Portland as they actively collect signatures over the next two weeks to ensure this public vote takes place. If the signatures are collected, it will put an immediate freeze on Portland's plan to fluoridate their firstname.lastname@example.org
Clean Water Portland PAC
408 SE 6th Avenue
Portland, OR 97214