The 'F' word

Letter to the editor

Posted: Monday, November 13, 2006

Webster's dictionary defines "poison" as "a substance which has inherent tendency to destroy life or impair health."

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Sodium fluoride currently being added to Juneau's drinking water is listed as, you guessed it, a poison. This product comes in 50-pound bags from Japan, a country where the product is banned for human use. On the bags is a warning: "Poison. Do not ingest." You find the same thing on a can of drain opener. I was told by one of the members from the mayor's fluoride panel that even though it is a poison, it is diluted enough so it doesn't kill you when you drink it. Great logic there, I suppose. Isn't it nice that we are eager to take a poisonous industrial waste and put it into our water supply?

It is well known that your skin is the largest organ of the human body. Have you ever thought of absorption? How long do you let your children play in that nice warm bath water? How much of this chemical are they really getting? All you hot tubers might want to think about that too.

Since there is so much controversy, with more gruesome facts coming to light each year on this subject I believed that our local government would do the right thing. Now, years later we are still having meetings about meetings and no action has been taken. What is so difficult about removing a poison from the drinking water? We take all sorts of precautions to remove and reduce lead in our daily lives. So I will leave you with one last thought.

The Clinical Toxicology of Commercial Products, 5th Edition (1984), gives lead a toxicity rating of 3 to 4 (3 = moderately toxic, 4 = very toxic) and the EPA has set 0.015 milligrams per liter as the MCL for lead in drinking water - with a goal of 0.0 milligrams per liter. The toxicity rating for fluoride is 4, yet the MCL for fluoride is currently set at 4 parts per million, over 250 times the permissible level for lead.

What part of poison don't you get?

Grant Ritter

Juneau



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