Original article text
Anti-Fluoride Debater’s Opponent Turns Chicken
Monday, 29 July, 2002
MORE than 60 people turned out to see a visiting US professor debate fluoridation with a life-size chicken.
Professor Paul Connett brought the stuffed hen to a weekend presentation after local health professionals refused to challenge him publicly on the issue.
He said the bright yellow bird symbolised the cowardly nature of pro-fluoride campaigners who lost their confidence when it came to open debate.
“Normally when we try to get a debate, the people who have spoken with enormous confidence in the community lose this confidence,” Prof Connett said.
“I am forced to wear a tie to symbolise that they were too chicken to debate, but today we have at last got an opponent.”
The chemistry professor, who has researched fluoride’s toxicity for six years, said many people fell into the trap of accepting health professionals’ support for fluoridation.
But he said many experts would not even take the time to look at research which suggested harmful side-effects.
“I do not believe that anyone with scientific background and knowledge could read the literature… and say it is safe and effective,” he said.
“And be so confident they are prepared to overrule citizens’ rights to decide what they drink.”
Even if there was the slightest doubt about the safety of fluoridating Geelong’s water supply, he said the process should be questioned.
The public talk was organised by the Barwon Association for Freedom from Fluoridation in a bid to educate the public about the issue.
The group has also launched a petition against any plans to fluoridate Geelong’s water.
It hopes to mirror the opposition of the mid-1980s when more than 30,000 signed a letter to stop fluoridation.
In light of recent events, we thought it appropriate to draw attention to the 2002 article (above), which offers a pertinent reminder of the long history of cowardice demonstrated by the promoters of water fluoridation (with rare exceptions). If you would like to connect with current anti-fluoridation activists in Geelong, click here. In 2010, Professor Connett co-authored a book on the fluoridation issue, which we highly recommend to all. Much has happened since 2002, thus we suggest visiting the FAN Research Databases for key updates and information.