Power of Story
Send a Tweet        
- Advertisement -

Share on Google Plus Share on Twitter Share on Facebook 1 Share on LinkedIn Share on PInterest Share on Fark! Share on Reddit Share on StumbleUpon Tell A Friend (1 Shares)  

Printer Friendly Page Save As Favorite View Favorites (# of views)   3 comments
OpEdNews Op Eds

Racism and Classism in the Argument for Fluoridation in Portland's Water

By       Message      Permalink
      (Page 1 of 1 pages)
Related Topic(s): ; ; ; ; , Add Tags Add to My Group(s)

View Ratings | Rate It

opednews.com Headlined to H4 5/25/13

- Advertisement -

Today is the final day of voting in the Portland special election that will decide whether fluoride is added to the city's water.

Most U.S. cities already have fluoride in the water. Portland is the largest city that doesn't. Portland residents have repeatedly voted against it. Recently, the city council decided to implement it anyway, but enough citizens signed a petition to call a special election.

Science is on the side of those who are pro-fluoridation; there is evidence that it can reduce cavities by 25 percent during a person's lifetime, and there is scant evidence that it is hazardous to health. That question has not yet been resolved, but, if it were, and if I were convinced of both the benefits and the safety of fluoridation, I would still be inclined to vote No, and this is why:

As Willamette Week - which favors fluoridation - reported, Healthy Kids, Healthy Portland, the organization that is pushing for fluoridation, has paid $143,000 in bribe money to get minority organizations to endorse its campaign.

- Advertisement -

"Fluoride and dental health are really important to low-income communities and communities of color," says Healthy Kids, Health Portland campaign manager Evyn Mitchell.  "We are trying to provide capacity to the groups that will do the outreach."

If that's the case, then why did Mitchell's organization have to buy support in those communities? 

The argument goes that children in low-income families will benefit the most from fluoridation, because they have less access to dental care than the great and the good on the City Council who tried to make the decision for them.

- Advertisement -

This is not democracy. It is not social responsibility. It is not compassion. It is classism and racism. Instead of doing outreach, instead of talking to poor people and people of color and asking what they want and need, the great and good have decided that they know best. Instead of offering dental care, just put some fluoride in the water, and those who have no choice but to drink it might save $38 in dental bills in a lifetime.

To vote No on this issue is not just to vote against what some regard as contamination of some of the purest and cleanest municipal water in the nation - it is also a vote against arrogance and cultural imperialism. It is a vote for inclusion and care, and a vote against easy fixes.

- Advertisement -


- Advertisement -

View Ratings | Rate It

The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.

Writers Guidelines

Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles
- Advertisement -

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

U.S. Media Helped Keep Debra Milke on Death Row for 20 Years

Why Scotland Must Vote Yes

Why I Watch People Die

Racism and Classism in the Argument for Fluoridation in Portland's Water

Bernie Sanders Sells His Soul and Ensures a Trump Victory

Why Obama Can't Destroy Hope Or Prevent Change