Opinion: More Medicaid coverage is better than fluoride, says Potsdam resident
Wednesday, September 26, 2018 - 7:23 am

To the Editor:

Potsdam voted to continue fluoridation of our public water supply. In light of this controversial decision, I want to say a few things.

My biggest issue was always that public fluoridation rejects our constitutional rights. When my children go to the dentist, I have to give consent for topical fluoride treatments, but that consent is not needed to forcibly add it to their drinking water. I'm saddened because it is more important to our local dentists than accepting Medicaid so that the poor can get proper dental care, which is by far more effective at preventing dental problems.

They will show up to shut us up and convince the masses that our teeth would be rotting out of our heads if not for the water and that it helps the poorest in our community, yet they turn those same people away because it affects their bottom line. Actions speak louder than words.

We don't need to ingest fluoride to receive its benefits. It is an outdated practice. Topical fluoride is readily available in toothpaste, mouthwash, pills, etc. Why then, are we putting it in our bodies when it's supposed to be for our teeth? I'd rather not take the risk of exposing my children to this substance and utilize other means to protect their teeth and overall wellbeing.

On that note, back to my original point: I am a person, a parent, and it is my right as an American to make informed medical decisions for myself and my family. This is not a public safety measure. Those are meant to protect the community at large, like when we close off roads during a storm or limit the exposure during an outbreak of dangerous communicable diseases.

Our choice to ingest fluoride or not is just that...a choice, one we are being denied. I'm disappointed in our representatives for not upholding our right to choose.

In addition, this should've been a local vote and not up to 5 people in our community. They made the wrong choice, and I hope they will eventually come to that conclusion.

I want to thank everyone who worked tirelessly to educate the community and stood up for our right to clean water, the most basic necessity of life. Your efforts to do the right and moral thing haven't gone unnoticed. Be disappointed, but don't be discouraged. We have more work to do.

Jessie LaRose