Santa Cruz California Defeats Fluoridation
Contact: Jeff Green
Santa Cruz Won't Swallow State's Fluoridation Mandate
Capturing 25 of 32 precincts, and staving off an absentee ballot campaign, the registered voters of the City of Santa Cruz declared by a 50.4 % to 49.6% margin that, despite the promise of a magic elixir that would alleviate all dental concerns, they were not willing to allow the City, nor the State of California, to convert their public water supply into a delivery system for fluoride, or any other substance intended to effect the mental or physical functions of a person.
This March 2, 1999 decision by Santa Cruz citizens follows a March 24, 1998 enactment of an ordinance by the Santa Cruz City Council, which defied state law by prohibiting fluoridation without a vote of the citizens. The new ordinance extends the prohibition to include any substance intended to treat humans, and can not be overturned by future City Council action.
San Diego and Sunnyvale also have ordinances that defy the California state law that requires fluoridation of all public water systems with more than 10,000 connections. Santa Cruz is #12 on the State's mandated priority list for fluoridation as the funds become available, San Diego is #18, Sunnyvale is #81.
Why did the majority of Santa Cruz voters reject fluoridating the water when the major media continued to report that the issue of fluoride's benefits and risks had been decided a long time ago?
"First and foremost, this had to be an educational campaign", according to Theodora Kerry of Santa Cruz Citizens for Safe Drinking Water. "The media continued to repeat the fluoridation proponents' mantra of how important it is that we do this for the kids; but when asked how much total fluoride exposure children are already receiving from all sources, including fluoridated toothpaste, and foods and beverages that contain fluoride because of fluoride-based pesticide residue or processing with fluoridated water, they would not answer.
"A closer inspection reveals that the government's own U.S. Health and Human Services report of 1991 indicates that even non-fluoridated communities are already receiving 1 to 2 times the established "optimal" amount of 1 mg per day, and fluoridated communities are being over-dosed at up to 6 and 7 times the targeted amount.
"The facts just don't add up to the fluoride-pushers' claims. They represent that the whole world is for fluoridation, when Japan and 98% of Europe are now fluoridation-free. They represent that all of the health professionals are behind fluoridation, when the American Dental Association and American Academy of Pediatrics both recommend controlled-dosage schedules of fluoride supplementation, the substitute for fluoridated water in the form of drops and tablets, that show that fluoridation would mass medicate all children under the age of 6 at a level higher than any physician, dentist or pediatrician in the country could ethically prescribe in a non fluoridated community. According to their recommendations, infants (under 6 months) are to receive no fluoride.
"In a December 21, 1998 Wall Street Journal article, the Center for Disease Control admits that more than 22% of all children now display the physical symptoms of fluoride poisoning, but state that they will continue to lobby for more fluoridation.
"Who are these people that would endorse uncontrolled overdose by their own experts' standards, and why would a person give up one's own right to choose, in favor of an obviously contrived political and industrial-driven agenda?"
Joyce Moore, another sponsor of the initiative, states that the political manipulations of the fluoride promoters is transparent. "Their tactic was to continually insult our intelligence, and the 'yes' voters could see that. When you see Jackie Speier, who ramrodded this fluoridation atrocity through the State Legislature, come into town and refuse to answer any citizen's questions; when you see Dr. Wolfe, this county's chief public health officer, make a media statement that it would be foolish for the public to listen to anything we say; when you see the State's fluoridation consultant, David Nelson, who gets paid to promote the State's policy, refuse to appear in any open forum or even radio program to discuss voters' concerns, enough people of this town saw right through it, and only dug deeper and asked more questions.
"Due to a 'fortuitous' interference in the distribution of flyers intended to announce an open debate sponsored by the Coalition of Concerned Parents and Educators, most of the invited parents of 3500 school children were not present at Bay View Elementary to hear City Council Member Cynthia Mathews struggle with her explanation as to why, in her work with Planned Parenthood, she would support women's rights to choose, including birth control, but not a woman's right to choose or deny other medications. Listeners were not convinced."
"When all is said and done," relates Lois Kirby, one of the most persistent signature gatherers in the petition drive to place the initiative on the ballot, "we remain free to choose our food, our own beverages, and whether we take any medication. If the Health Department could prove it is good for us and provide for a consistent quality product, fluoride could have been added to salt, just like iodine, more than fifty years ago, and we wouldn't still be discussing this issue.
"I am not giving up my First and Fourth Amendment rights, and Legislators better get a clue. Industry will have to find somewhere else besides our drinking water to dump their hazardous waste."
AMENDMENT TO THE MUNICIPAL CODE PROHIBITING THE USE OF THE PUBLIC WATER SUPPLY TO DELIVER PRODUCTS OR SUBSTANCES INTENDED TO AFFECT THE PHYSICAL OR MENTAL FUNCTIONS OF PERSONS CONSUMING SUCH WATER
Whereas water is essential to all and the public water supply should be safe for all to drink; and
Whereas individuals vary in their susceptibility and responses to various substances as well as in the amounts of water they consume; and
Whereas alternative methods of delivery for all substances exist; and
Whereas increased risk of hip fracture, cancer, neurological impairment, dental fluorosis and other harmful effects have been linked to fluoride in the scientific literature; and
Whereas data from the U.S. Public Health Service and the State of California show no significant difference in decay rates of permanent teeth and dental costs in fluoridated and non fluoridated areas in California; and
Whereas each individual possesses the inalienable right to choose or reject what he or she consumes; Therefore
The public water supply shall not be used to deliver any product, substance, device, element, medicine or preventative agent with the intent or for the purpose of affecting the physical or mental functions of the body of any person consuming such water.
No fluoride or fluorine-containing substance may be added to public water systems. All laws to the contrary are hereby repealed.