Albemarle City Council hears concerns about fluoride

After hearing concerns from Union County resident Harold Schmoecker regarding fluoride in drinking water, Albemarle City Council took no action at its April 15 meeting.

Schmoecker, who had addressed Stanly County commissioners on March 4, cited a number of studies and sources in his presentation, which recommended discontinuing the infusion of fluoride into the city’s drinking water supply.

“Fluoridation goes against all principles of pharmacology,” said Schmoecker, who categorized it as contributing to “brain drain” in youngsters, in addition to “violating the right of individuals to informed consent.”

“You’ve presented a lot of information tonight,” said Mayor Pro-Tem Martha Sue Hall upon the conclusion of Schmoecker’s presentation. “What are your credentials? What do you do?”

“I’m in the business world, but I’ve put hundreds of hours of research into this topic,” he replied.

Following Schmoecker’s presentation, retired dentist Dr. Tom Norwood, retired UNC-Charlotte chemistry instructor Dr. John Risley and retired Catawba College chemistry instructor Dr. Jim Beard offered rebuttals citing the effectiveness of fluoride in reducing cavities.

“The benefits of fluoridation are immense,” said Norwood, who cited having observed higher rates of cavities among youngsters who lived in homes with well water. “It (fluoridation) is one of the greatest health benefits of the 20th century.”

Council members did not discuss the matter and offered no further questions.

“We will take the matter under consideration,” Mayor Ronnie Michael said.

Toby Thorpe is a freelance writer for The Stanly News & Press.