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Springville Journal letter to the editor: Say no to community water fluoridation in Springville

I believe Springville’s current debate over adding fluoride into the public water supply is a good sign that, at least, freedom of speech is still allowed, in this country. I would like to join the discussion from a different perspective.

I am a community pharmacist. As most of you know, my job involves giving medications to patients which were authorized on a prescription, from a registered health care prescriber. Once I have performed all my responsibilities involved with filling the prescription, the patient takes the medication home with them. Does the patient always take and/or fill the prescription prescribed for them? No.

My point here is that everyone has free will, to choose or not to choose to take medication. A fluoride supplement for internal consumption requires a prescription to obtain it. A patient may or may not take fluoride, based on all the information, from various sources. If a drug (fluoride) needs a prescription, then it is medication under the current laws of the land.

I appreciate the excellent job the Springville Water Department does, on a daily basis. They add fluoride to the water system precisely, as they have for as long as they have been doing it. I can also sympathize with Springville’s local government’s reluctance to change what they have “always” done, as far as fluorinating the public water. Most people do not like change.

Nobody is consciously trying to harm the residents of Springville, by fluorinating the water. Nobody is to blame for continuing past policies, but everyone is accountable for their actions, in the present moment.

Who among you believes the government (local and/or national) should force you to take medication, without your consent? That is what is currently happening. I believe it is also my right to either take or not take a drug ordered by my physician.

Whether fluoride has been “proven” safe or “proven” harmful is not the issue. The real issue is that the village of Springville is delivering a drug into my body, without my consent. It is not only un-American, but it may be potentially harmful to our health.

The local government has already decided that fluorination of the water is not to be questioned. A few elected officials should not decide the will of the people. A public referendum is the most accurate way to know the will of the majority, not the minority, of the people. I have always believed that common sense is the answer to most questions.

If elected officials have a chance to wash their hands of responsibility by proposing a referendum to decide an issue and oppose it, then all of the citizens of this community need to question the motivations and moral character of the elected officials. If any of the local government officials have a medical degree, then I am anxiously awaiting to receive my prescription for fluoride.

I choose not to “fill” my prescription, no matter who thinks it is in my best interest.

Karl Fruehauf

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