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The Fight Against Fluoride: One We Can Win

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At present the residents of New Plymouth (population 55,000) are embroiled in a battle to end water fluoridation. A group of about 90 of us have been organizing since April. You can following our progress by visiting and joining our Facebook page Fluoride-free Taranaki at . The site is updated every time a local citizens group (anywhere in the world) pressures their city or town to end fluoridation. Ninety-eight percent of Europe and 60 US cities have banned water fluoridation. Only seven (mainly English speaking) countries continue to fluoridate water

Pro-fluoride advocates in the seven countries that still fluoridate don't have a leg to stand on in terms of research - their campaign is based almost entirely on propaganda. Moreover communities that continue to fluoridate tap water, despite citizen opposition, face a high probability of being sued (there are currently 66 lawsuits in the courts, most related to fluoride-related kidney damage).

Owing to the high chance of success, ending water fluoridation is an ideal cause to promote community involvement, as well as providing positive experience in movement building. If you're still drinking fluoridated tap water, I can guarantee there's a group in your area fighting it. To reach them contact the Fluoride Action Network at

I have spent most of August working on my submission to New Plymouth District Council.  The following is an excerpt from my submission:

Submission to New Plymouth District Council

Dr Stuart Jeanne Bramhall, Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist

Former Clinical Assistant Professor (Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences) University of Washington Medical School (1996-2002)

Executive Summary: Fluoridation of public water supplies is a 70 year controversy. Historically most academic researchers consider the fluoride controversy a political, rather than medical or scientific, debate. The vast majority of peer reviewed research has always pointed to harmful effects on human health.

A Misplaced Burden of Proof

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None of the studies linking fluoridation with brain damage, arthritis, hypothyroidism, bone cancer and other conditions offer absolute proof that water fluoridation is the root cause of these problems. They don't pretend to. However nearly all regulatory agencies -- with the New Zealand Ministry of Health being the notable exception -- acknowledge that they establish real cause for concern.

Depending on the context, the Minister of Health arbitrarily dismisses all studies linking fluoridation and health problems as either "flawed" or "hypothesis generating" (i.e. raising interesting scientific questions for further study). I have real problems with this cavalier -- and frankly cynical -- attitude. What the MOH is doing, in essence, is placing the burden on doctors, scientists, and citizens who oppose water fluoridation to find a statistically significant sample of children whose brains have been damaged by excessive fluoride exposure before they will consider banning fluoridation, as most of Europe has done.

The Health Effect of Multiple Chemical Exposures

For the MOH to demand this standard of absolute proof is illogical, unprincipled and extremely dangerous. For the last decade or so, the medical community has been dealing with a virtual epidemic of intellectual handicap, learning disability, autism, ADHD, arthritis, hypothyroidism and osteoporosis in the elderly. Obviously there are multiple causes for these problems. However there is strong presumptive evidence that it's linked to the cocktail of chemicals all human beings are exposed to on a daily basis. Fluoride is merely one of the chemicals doctors and scientists are concerned about.

When global blood screening shows that most people are regularly absorbing at least 100 toxic chemicals, it's extremely difficult to link a specific illness to one exposure or combination of exposures. However unlike other potentially dangerous chemicals, fluoride is being used as a drug to prevent tooth decay. As such, it's the only drug in modern use where there is no obligation on the manufacturer to establish its safety and effectiveness. To make matters worse, the government is forcing us to take it by putting it in our drinking water.

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Fluoride: the New Lead

As the National Research Council (part of the National Academy of Sciences) points out in their 2006 report, establishing unequivocal proof that fluoride damages children brains could take a decade or more. I've already been through the heartache of persuading government authorities that lead poisoning causes brain damage in children. In the three decades it took to convince them to ban lead-based paint and petrol additives, hundreds of thousands of new children were left with intellectual handicap, learning disabilities, autism and other irreversible and untreatable health conditions.

The EPA Commissions the NRC to Review the Research

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I am a 63 year old American child and adolescent psychiatrist and political refugee in New Zealand. I have just published a young adult novel THE BATTLE FOR TOMORROW (which won a NABE Pinnacle Achievement Award) about a 16 year old girl who (more...)

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I have written elsewhere about the revolution star... by Dr Stuart Jeanne Bramhall on Saturday, Sep 3, 2011 at 6:51:07 PM is a... by Mike Preston on Saturday, Sep 3, 2011 at 7:46:53 PM
I should have known better. My mother in the 50's ... by tim mcghie on Saturday, Sep 3, 2011 at 9:06:55 PM
I feel guilty, too, Tim. Fortunately all my daught... by Dr Stuart Jeanne Bramhall on Sunday, Sep 4, 2011 at 6:52:21 PM
"Most parents are more concerned about their child... by Michael Rose on Sunday, Sep 4, 2011 at 8:25:28 PM
The cumulative effects of drinking flouridated wat... by Donald on Monday, Sep 5, 2011 at 5:05:38 AM
Very-highest commendation for a truly excellent ar... by Michael Rose on Sunday, Sep 4, 2011 at 9:47:25 PM
I'm glad you mentioned water privatization in Auck... by Dr Stuart Jeanne Bramhall on Sunday, Sep 4, 2011 at 11:03:01 PM
There's no better person to update us on City Wate... by Michael Rose on Monday, Sep 5, 2011 at 12:41:27 AM
According to the woman who runs Fluoride Action Ne... by Dr Stuart Jeanne Bramhall on Sunday, Sep 4, 2011 at 6:57:55 PM
possible cause for some of my dain bramage. I reci... by Donald on Sunday, Sep 4, 2011 at 9:53:49 PM
All I know is that fluoride is incredibly toxic an... by Dr Stuart Jeanne Bramhall on Monday, Sep 5, 2011 at 1:01:04 AM
is making the money on floridation and how much? I... by Donald on Monday, Sep 5, 2011 at 4:28:24 AM
Fluoride is a toxic waste product obtained from th... by Dr Stuart Jeanne Bramhall on Tuesday, Sep 6, 2011 at 1:59:45 AM
and how does it get into toothpaste, mouthwash and... by Donald on Tuesday, Sep 6, 2011 at 5:22:07 AM
The waste product that goes into public water supp... by Dr Stuart Jeanne Bramhall on Tuesday, Sep 6, 2011 at 2:04:12 PM
how many ppm of that are they adding to public wat... by Donald on Tuesday, Sep 6, 2011 at 2:37:16 PM
It depends where you live. According to the CDC th... by Dr Stuart Jeanne Bramhall on Tuesday, Sep 6, 2011 at 3:12:20 PM
be required to list the nutritional values and MDR... by Donald on Tuesday, Sep 6, 2011 at 3:59:41 PM
Now I understand, and why I feel fluoridation... by Donald on Tuesday, Sep 6, 2011 at 3:43:50 PM