Letter: No Medication Without Consent
To the Editor:
This is in response to the Dec. 2 editorial, “Bradford Regress.” First off, let me state that I am the “anti-fluoride activist from out of the area” mentioned in the first article. I, and five previous generations of my family have lived in Fairlee. My wife, three children and I have lived in Bradford now for about six years, so I don’t consider myself “from out of the area.”
Set aside the fact that fluoride harms people’s bodies by lowering IQ levels and attacking the thyroid, and that it provides minimal benefit to your teeth, and that of Vermont’s 466 public water systems only 66 (14 percent) put fluoride in their water, even as Vermont’s rate of active decay and cavities continues to drop (as of 2003, 84 percent of students in grades 1 through 3 have no active decay, up from 81 percent in 1994, and as of 2004, 60 percent of students grades 1 through 3 are cavity-free, up from 51 percent in 1994) or that it is a toxic waste product of phosphate mining from China.
Informed consent, as defined by the American Medical Association, “is more than simply getting a patient to sign a written consent form. It is a process of communication between a patient and physician that results in the patient’s authorization or agreement to undergo a specific medical intervention. “ I find it appalling that area dentists and doctors can somehow force the population to take medication without consent. Also, there is no way to control the dose people receive. If I drink 30 glasses of water, and my neighbor drinks three, I am getting 10 times more fluoride. In fact, no other “medication” can be administered without a set dose. Why is it that fluoride can? Informed consent is basic medical practice. The fact remains, no one has given their consent (in fact, in 1971, when Bradford started putting it in, there was no vote), and the dose is not regulated.
I do not believe this should be voted on to begin with. A vote means other people are deciding whether or not I take a medication. No one has that right.