Fluoride Action Network

Fluoridation debate continues in Nebraska

Source: KHAS-TV 5 | November 4th, 2010 | By Amy West
Location: United States, Nebraska

The Fluoride issue still stirs debate around the world, but in Burwell, Nebraska it almost meant a recall for the town mayor and two city council members.

All recall efforts failed in Tuesday’s election. The unofficial results said Mayor Charles Cone and city council members Terry Cone and Carolyn DeBaetes will continue to represent the community.

Residents raised a petition to recall the three saying they didn’t allow the community to vote on whether or not to put fluoride in the water.

Both Cones and DeBaets said they thought the time for a public vote occurred before they took office.

The situation reminds us that the debate on fluoride is alive and well as it has been for more than 60 years.

It is an ongoing drinking debate. They’re closing debate on the fluoride question. While some hail the dental benefits of water fluoridation others say it comes at a cost.

The debate has been raging for more than 60 years. The people are intelligent enough to decide for themselves whether they want a rat poison shoveled into their drinking water.

It’s a conflict between the common good and individual rights.

Using fluoridation to prevent tooth decay – especially in children and the poor. Isn’t it a fact that every reputable medical and dental organization in North America favors fluoridization of water?

Or for people like chiropractor James Widhelm it’s his right to chose.

“I would really like to choose what chemicals I’m putting into my body if it’s something that’s really supposed to be healthy for me so if you can mass medicate for dental problems then what’s the next thing going to be?” said Widhelm.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control listed water fluoridation as one of the ten great public health achievements of the 20th century. Hastings Dentist Sean Daly agrees.

“It helps kids mainly from the age of four months up to eight and that’s the age when children have the biggest problems with decay which is one of the biggest diseases in children that people don’t realize,” said Daly.

So is there an end in sight to this debate?

“I think so. You know it won’t be too long before they say, you know, maybe it wasn’t such a good thing to put in the water,” said Widhelm.

“I wish I could say yes there’s going to be an end but it might be a while,” Daly said.

The Nebraska legislature passed a bill in 2008 mandating that Nebraska towns of one thousand residents or more fluoridate their water unless they voted not to by June of this year.

Hastings and Grand Island along with 58 other communities opted out in 2008.

To learn more about this ongoing debate and for complete interview with James Widhelm and Dentist Sean Daly see the clips at bottom of http://www.khastv.com/news/local/Fluoridation-debate-continues-in-Nebraska-106732493.html?skipthumb=Y#commentform