Fluoride fears unfounded

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Guest Editorial by Kenneth Vaught, Independence Town Manager and member of the Virginia-Carolina Water Authority

I am writing in response to the Virginia-Carolina Water Authority meetings attended by a group of people opposed to water fluoridation.
The most recent meetings were Nov. 15 in Independence and with the Alleghany County Board of Commissioners in Sparta, N.C.
Several citizens with the newly formed group spoke against water fluoridation by the water authority.
I’m personally offended by any from the anti-fluoride group who made false claims about water authority members — calling us unpatriotic, insinuating we are taking bribes, and comparing us to Nazis.
Their hateful personal attacks are uncalled for and unappreciated.
I believe most of the anti-fluoride folks are good and decent folks, but a few that made false personal attacks are fanatics at best.
I don’t care if the water authority fluoridates its water, but some have turned this into a different issue.
Fanatics disregard creditable information to further their cause. The anti-fluoride speakers at the meetings made statements that they would not recognize any information from other sources.
The sources they are referring to are the North Carolina Health Department, the Virginia Health Department, the American Dental Association, the Centers for Disease Control, American Cancer Society, American Public Health Association, World Health Organization, and many others.
They ignored endorsement letters from Alleghany Memorial Hospital and several private practice doctors and dentists in Alleghany County.
I witnessed verbal attacks on the Sparta mayor and town manager and the Alleghany County manager and commission chairman that were uncalled for.
Fanatics made hateful comments directed at the doctor and dentist from the North Carolina Health Department before ever hearing their comments. This was uncalled for, but a familiar tactic of fanatics.
I ask anyone that may have concerns about water fluoridation to do a little reading and ask your doctor or dentist for their opinion before making up your mind.
You may want to read the American Public Health Association’s “position paper” on community water fluoridation.
Don’t let fanatic activists give you false, misleading, and/or partial information on which to base your decision.  And don’t let overbearing activists force their point of view on you.