October 5, 2011 | 10:30am
Despite being a common practice in developed countries for nearly 70 years and dubbed "one of the greatest public health achievements of the century" by the CDC, water fluoridation has joined the likes of Charlie Crist and Barack Obama as the latest enemy of the Tea Party in Florida. Tea Party activists have successfully persuaded Pinellas County to stop fluoridating its water supply because, uh, it's an agenda put forth by the world government to keep people stupid.
Water suppliers began adding fluoride to water way back in the '40s to help control tooth decay. The American Dental Association claims
fluoridated water is "unquestionably one of the safest and most beneficial, cost-effective public-health measures for preventing, controlling, and in some cases reversing tooth decay." The only proven side effect is that sometimes, if the concentration is too high, it can leave cosmetic, reversible white spots on children's teeth.
Yeah, well, the Tea Party isn't having it, and its members have convinced the Pinellas County Commission to halt the process in a 4-3 vote.
"Fluoride is a toxic substance," Tea Party activist Tony Caso of Palm Harbor said at the commission meeting, according to the St. Pete Times
. "This is all part of an agenda that's being pushed forth by the so-called globalists in our government and the world government to keep the people stupid so they don't realize what's going on."
"This is the U.S. of A, not the Soviet Socialist Republic," he added. (The Soviet Union actually stopped fluoridating its water shortly before its 1991 demise.)
While nearly 70 percent of Florida's population received fluoridated water, now only 25 percent of Pinellas residents will have water from fluoridated supplies.
Strange fears about fluoride in water systems are nothing new. During the Cold War, several conspiracy theorists claimed it was a communist plot.
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