Few could support forcibly fluoridating the water supply after reading Senior EPA Scientist Dr. J. William Hirzy's statement before the United State Congress (Senate) on June 29, 2000 against fluoridation on behalf of 1500 EPA scientists, engineers and other professionals.
As more research is conducted on the fluoridation and the health risks studied and published in peer reviewed scientific literature, hundreds of dentists, EPA scientists, toxicologists, and health care professionals increasing have spoken out and advocated against fluoridation of water supplies. Environmental groups, such as the Sierra Club, who have studied the litertaure have been increasing coming out against fluoride as well.
Given the growing healths concerns from leading scientists around the world, is it any wonder that nearly all European countries have now removed fluoride from their drinking water supplies?
Is it surprising that over a hundred of cities around the United States have either rejected or removed fluoride from the drinking water?
Fortunately, as the risks of fluoridation become better known, numerous groups that once supported fluoridation have now withdrawn their support such as the American Cancer Society, American Heart Association, National Kidney Foundation, American Diebetes Association, American Chiropractic Association, American Civil Liberty Association, and many more. (see page 3).
Protect Bellingham's drinking water : Reject the attempt to force every Bellingham resident to ingest fluoride:
1) The health risks of fluoride are significant. The most common ailment is dental and skeletal fluorosis.
"well-nourished children drinking fluoridated water experienced a dental fluorosis rate of 25%, poorly nourished children experienced a fluorosis rate of 60%" (Journal of the American Dental Association 44:156165 (1952))." Is this what we want for the Bellingham resident's teeth?
There is also the acute danger should the fluoride delivery system malfunction. When this has occurred in other cities such as Hoper Bay, Alaska serious debilitating injury has occurred as well as death. ("Deaths or poisonings linked to fluoridation or fluoride products"). Fluoride equipment malfunctions and other problems have resulted in poisonings in Poplarville, Miss (8/1991); Middletown Maryland (1994); Galesburg, Illinois (1994); Kodiak, Alaska (1993) and many others.
2) Bellingham residents should reject paying for the $750,000 initial cost (approx) and $140,000 cost (approx) per year "Fluoride tax."
These fees will certainly be required to be paid by a tax and increase of the Bellingham water rates for residents. Water rates are already high enough in Bellingham. (These figures are derived from the city of Lakewood, Washington (population 60,000), a city slightly smaller than Bellingham, who recently rejected fluoridating their water supply). Even this cost, however, pales in comparison to the expense of buying hundreds (thousands?) of water purifiers and/or the expense of hiring a water service. If even 10 percent of the population (7,000) is forced to switch to a water service, the cummulative cost could easily be well over $2,520,000 per year asssuming water service costs a conservative $30 per month
Should Bellingham now become like many major cities in the United State where the tap water is avoided and ridiculed and bottled water use becomes the norm?
3) Choice of Medication : The right to decide the medication one ingests is fundamental.
Bellingham city residents have already spoken clearly on the inappropriateness of using the city water supply to mass medicate the populace via the Bellingham City Council on September 15, 1997. On this date, the bi-partison city council overwhelmingly (6-1) to protect clean water and reject fluoridation enacting:
Res. No. 42-97 A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY OF BELLINGHAM RECOGNIZING THE IMPROPRIETY OF THE USE OF ITS PUBLIC WATER SYSTEM TO DISPENSE FLUORIDE TREATMENT TO THE GENERAL POPULATION.
As of today, this resolution remains valid.
Undeterred, the fluoridations, operating a campaign based in Seattle and El Segundo, California, now seek to spend over $100,000 with paid signature gatherers to try to impose their will on what has been a settled issue in Bellingham for the last 8 years.
Forcing medication on an entire populace is morally and medically unethical. Who should decide what medications and supplements you and your family take?
4) Bellingham residents have already extensively considered and rejected the proposal to fluoridate the water supply in 1992 and 1997 after numerous public hearings.
Addressing the issue of forced Fluoridation of the water supply every 5 to 7 years is divisive to the community and unnecessary. If anything, Bellingham residents have made it clear that having a clean drinking water supply is more of a priority now than ever. Millions of dollars have already been spent in purchasing land in the Lake Whatcom watershed to preserve the quality of the drinking water. What sense does it make to now add a chemical with documented health risks to the water supply at the city utility?
5) Any benefits of Fluoride occur when Fluoride is applied topically, not ingested:
When water fluoridation began 50 years ago, it was believed that fluoride needed to be ingested in order to be effective. This, however, is no longer the view of the dental establishment, which now generally concedes that fluoride's benefits are derived primarily from topical application. (2) According to the US Centers for Disease Control, "[L]aboratory and epidemiologic research suggests that fluoride prevents dental caries predominately after eruption of the tooth into the mouth, and its actions primarily are topical for both adults and children."
6) The cost of providing free dental care to children who are underserved would be less expensive than Flouridating the water supply forcing everyone in Bellingham to ingest Fluoride.
The initial cost of implementing a Fluoridation system would pay for the dental care of 1875 children assuming the average cost was $400. Also, the maintenance cost of the Fluoride system of $140,000 per year would pay for another 350 children each year.
If the initial cost of the Fluoride system were placed in a fund and interest of 6 percent was received yearly, 462 children could be given free dental care forever.
In addition, Bellingham residents would save the additional costs of spending tens of thousands of dollars yearly on bottled water and filtration systems in order to avoid drinking Fluoridated water.
Finally, Bellingham residents will save the extensive costs of having to undergo costly dental procedures to correct dental Fluorosis which is exclusively caused by excessive Fluoride. Flourosis damage often requires porcelain veneers to correct.
See the statement from Dentist Debra Hopkins a practicing dentists from Tacoma, Washington discussing the health risks of Fluoridating the water supply. As mengtioned above, Dr. Hopkins also discusses the fact that Fluoride is only effective when applied topically to teeth, not ingested and the health risks of hip fractures in the elderly and bone cancer in young males increase substantially in Fluoridated cities.
Debra Hopkins, a Tacoma dentist, is a member of the Pierce County Dental Society, the Washington State Dental Society, the American Dental Association and the International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology.