Re: “Fluoride in water? Bill would give Maine customers the final say” (March 18):

I happen to be a proponent of fluoride in the water system. However, the proposed bill is valid, and what we learn from this discussion is important.

I was born in Keene, New Hampshire, one of the first New England communities to put fluoride in its water. I am now closing in quickly on 68 years of life. Fluoride was in the water I consumed for my entire life. I have four fillings – yes, four! That is it.

That being said, I do also have hypothyroidism and have had it since I was in my mid-40s. By comparison, a grandmother, mother and aunt who all grew up without fluoride in their water were also all severely hypothyroid. They also all had cavities – many cavities. It appears to me that all members of my family were not challenged mentally, although I am sure I have a few friends who would jokingly say otherwise!

From this test case of one family, I do support fluoridation. I would like, however, to hear more about the negative effects of putting fluoride in the water. From my perspective now, fluoride has wonderful benefits and few drawbacks.

The proposed bill should also help us all consider what we are willing to do for the better good of the entire population, including a discussion on vaccinations. By what criteria can we maintain a standard that we feel is safe and healthy for all? As a citizen of this country, I am governed by our laws. These laws need to reflect the thought of the majority after carefully considering all knowledge of the time.

As with all legislation, fluoride and vaccinations call all of us to become well informed, so we can respond and vote with knowledge.

Dolly Anagnostis