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letters Feb. 7

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Evidence and fluoride

Re: No evidence that fluoridation is harmful (Feb. 4). Amarjit Rihal, president of the Manitoba Dental Association, states there is no scientific evidence to support allegations of harm by fluoridation of public water.

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If one does a simple Google search, there will be 1,220,000 references to a large variety of valid scientific and societal arguments against fluoridation.

The intent of this letter is not to get into a spitting contest about the pros and cons of fluoridation. However, I am concerned with the serious lack of epidemiological and scientific evidence that shows we are, in fact, deficient in fluoride. There was concrete evidence that many areas in Canada and the U.S. were deficient in iodine, which justified its inclusion in table salt. This is not the case with the addition of fluoride in our water systems.

Adding fluoride in public water when there is insufficient evidence to show that we are deficient in fluoride is equivalent to putting our heads in the sand. The cause of tooth decay is not a lack of fluoride, but the consumption of junk foods, especially sugary foods. It seems strange to me that the dental associations are not arduously promoting correct eating for children and instead are supporting fluoridated toothpaste and the fluoridation of public water supplies.




It's time to take the fluoride debate away from the dentists and give it to toxicologists who study the whole body, not just teeth.

As stated in the Harvard study published in the government journal Environmental Health Perspectives in October: "The children in high fluoride areas had significantly lower IQ than those who lived in low fluoride areas."

On their website, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention explains that using fluoridated water to prepare infant formula will increase the chance of the child developing dental fluorosis, a permanent browning and discolouring of the teeth.

Windsor, Ont., has joined Calgary and various northern communities in stopping the practice. Only 5.7 per cent of the world fluoridates, with most of Europe refusing from the beginning or discontinuing later due to health concerns.



Get to work on the Red

Let me get this straight. The Delta Marsh on the south end of Lake Manitoba gets $3.6 million for actual physical upgrades, but the Red River delta and Lake Winnipeg get only $600,000 for more studies. What's wrong with this picture anyways? Enough with the studies already; it's time to get out the shovels and get to work before it's too late.



Free to vent

Will Braun complains that many of the Free Press online comments are bigoted toward Canadian aboriginals and do not engage people in worthwhile dialogue (Letters, Jan. 31). I guess in Braun's world, the only viewpoint he wants to be engaged with is his own liberal bias.

Free speech is every Canadian's right. Live with it.

If you don't want to hear other people's views, don't read them.

Cal Paul


Off target

Re: NRA members, leader at odds on gun checks (Feb. 4). Wayne LaPierre argues against background checks, arguing that they would only affect the law-abiding people, not criminals.

In the last five years alone, nine mass shootings have occurred in the U.S., resulting in the death of 124 innocent victims. Other than being male, all nine shooters, before becoming killers, had one thing in common: None of them was a criminal.



Distorted view

The article It's all clear (Feb. 3) reads like an advertisement, complete with a phone number from a PVC window manufacturer. It's not objective and is riddled with inaccuracies.

Accurate Dorwin invented the fibreglass window in the early 1980s, and we have sold tens of millions of dollars worth of fibreglass windows into the local Winnipeg residential market. Fibreglass and aluminum windows are used in commercial applications due to their superior strength and durability over PVC.

The statements regarding the cost and quality of the windows from large manufacturers is completely false. One of the main advantages of an assembly line over building "one-offs" is that a production line produces consistent results. Using Lavineway's rationale, I could build a better-quality car in my backyard for less money than buying from a local Ford dealer.

Wood windows are not two to four times the price of PVC. Furthermore, it is incorrect that wood windows are less energy efficient than PVC. Although wood can absorb moisture, its thermal coefficient of expansion is less than that of PVC.

Today's PVC windows are of good quality and are likely to be less expensive than good-quality wood, metal or fibreglass windows. But you would be hard-pressed to find an architect who would choose them over the aforementioned alternatives unless costs were the only concern.

The article also fails to mention the environmental hazards of PVC. The manufacturing process of polyvinyl chloride is one of the most toxic industrial activities, not to mention the release of harmful dioxin when PVC burns.

Doug Nowlin


Some use cash

So, Pat Martin would like to get rid of small denomination coins. Perhaps he is a part of that one per cent that will only pay the exact amount of their purchase while using debit cards or gathering loyalty points on credit cards.

The less affluent would literally be nickelled and dimed out of grocery money. Shame on him.


Oakville, Ont.

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition February 7, 2013 A12

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