Editor’s note: This commentary is by Jack Crowther, of Rutland, who is retired. He worked as a journalist and in corporate communications.
It is ironic that because fluoride is a “systemic” poison, affecting the body generally rather than in one specific way, the fight against community water fluoridation is made harder.
This seems contradictory. Why would a substance described in “Clinical Toxicity of Commercial Products” (Gosselin, Smith, and Hodge, 1984) as a “general protoplasmic poison” allow any defenders for the practice of fluoridation?
It is easy to specify a lethal dose of fluoride, as many a fluoride-poisoned rat, insect and pig worm could testify. But the harm from chronic ingestion of low-dose fluoride is harder to pin down and thereby easier to ignore or dismiss.
The damage from chronic, low-dose fluoride is uncertain and variable, affecting individuals, organs and body systems in scattershot patterns. This has allowed proponents of fluoridation, a random-dose form of mass medication, to cloud the air with partial truths, irrelevant distractions and tricks of language, all marshaled to make fluoride seem a “safe and effective” key to dental health.
When the National Research Council in 2006 called for more research into fluoride’s effects in a number of areas — the kidney, bone fractures, cancer and thyroid problems, to name a few — it demonstrated the challenge facing fluoridation critics. While the red flags of fluoride harm were everywhere, the hard evidence to close the case against fluoridation was often lacking, at least in the NRC’s view.
Solid evidence to indict fluoridation continually emerges. But the dental and public health establishments, quietly supported by the fluoride-polluting and sugar industries, locked in to the pro-fluoridation doctrine nearly 70 years ago. They have too much at stake to back down.
Regardless of merit, science that exposes the dangers of fluoride and fluoridation will be the target of every trick in the propagandist’s playbook — from political intimidation to scurrilous discrediting of scientists who dare to speak out.
Fluoridation proponents seize on the gaps in research to assume a blanket, “there’s-no-proof-of-harm” stance. Only fluoride’s long history as a water additive allows it to escape the testing and monitoring standards required of drugs introduced today. Grandfathered in by the Public Health Service endorsement of 1950, fluoridation sails along with minimal scrutiny.
Reasonable caution would dictate that public drinking water, without fluoride added, would make sense until the jury of further research comes in with a verdict. But even if the risks of low-dose fluoride were judged acceptable, fluoridation would violate medical ethics. Each of us has the right to decide whether or not to take a drug, even if it is recommended by our local dentist.
*Original article online at https://vtdigger.org/2017/08/11/jack-crowther-systemic-poison-fluoride-elusive-target/