Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

"Nanogirl" Dr Michelle Dickinson Reneges on Fluoride Debate

PRESS RELEASE

"Nanogirl" Dr Michelle Dickinson Reneges on Fluoride Debate

The question has to be asked - why after denigrating opponents of fluoridation and claiming that she has the science on her side, will Dr Dickinson not front up to a public debate like she agreed?

Auckland University Professor Michelle Dickinson, aka science blogger “Nanogirl” has backed down on debating Professor Paul Connett, Senior Advisor to the Fluoride Action Network. Dr Dickinson agreed in an email correspondence on Sunday with Fluoride Free New Zealand (FFNZ) that "she was happy to debate" and that "it was a debate that needs to happen". She said she would debate Prof Connett, providing it was on a mainstream television channel. The Nation and Q+A TV programmes both said they were willing to host the fluoridation debate.

However, she is now claiming she never agreed in the first place. FFNZ says they have the email trail to prove she did agree and will provide it on request. They say Michelle needs to explain herself.

Dickinson has been an outspoken critic of people opposed to fluoridation on her blog and said in an opinion piece for the NZ Herald that fluoridation opponents consistently prolong the fluoridation debate and referred to them as “purveyors of non-science woo woo.”

Media Spokesperson for FFNZ, Mary Byrne says, “It looks like Michelle has found out the hard way, that it is not the opponents of fluoridation that are purveying non-science woo-woo, but the promoters. This should give the public and decision makers, who take their cue from people such as Michelle, serious pause for thought”.

Dickinson blogged that water is toxic if we have too much of it and asked, “does this mean we need to start warning people about the dangers of drinking water too?” She added, “you would need to drink 1220 glasses of water in a day for it to be possibly toxic” and “perhaps your messages should be less concerned about the levels of fluoride in the water, and more concerned about the dangers of water itself!

Byrne says, “Michelle has now probably read a response to her blog from Prof Connett, where he explained that the activists that Michelle was criticising were actually correct. Fluoride does have harmful effects at low doses. The Ministry of Health reports that 41% of children in New Zealand have some form of dental fluorosis, the first outward sign of fluoride toxicity. This proves children are getting a toxic dose. Perhaps Michelle had never thought about it like this before, and has now realised how mistaken she has been”.

If Dickinson is not comfortable to front a debate, then Sir Peter Gluckman should make himself available. Mary Byrne says, “The New Zealand public and our MPs are relying on the science Prof Gluckman has provided. It would say an awful lot if he was not prepared to publicly stand by his scientific position in a debate.”

Fluoride Free New Zealand says it is well overdue for a proper debate to be held on this subject. “For too long we have only heard one side of the argument and we are tired of people like Michelle denigrating those of us opposed to fluoridation when they don’t have the guts to stand up in public and defend it in a fair debate.” Mary adds, “If she has realised there is more to the issue than she thought, she should have the integrity to say so.”

Parliament will debate the 2nd reading of the fluoridation bill on the 6th of June.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Bojo Visit

British Foreign Minister Boris Johnson is in town today, just over a year since his political career peaked… and then wobbled off into a grey zone of indecision...

Currently, Johnson is touring the former colonies, talking up the historical ties. More>>

 

PM's Press Conference: Boris, Infrastructure, Immigration, Drugs

Prime Minister Bill English opened this week's post-cabinet press conference by revisiting that day's announcement of 'Crown Infrastructure Partners'... More>>

Employers Pleased: Reports Of Govt Backdown On Low-Wage Immigration

MEA: We are pleased to hear that the Government is planning to review incoming immigration changes with a specific focus on how they will affect the regions. Effectively addressing skills shortages in manufacturing and other sectors needs to remain a core part of our immigration system ... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Ch-Ch-Changes At IRD

Job cuts aren’t happening at the IRD, exactly. Instead, there’s apparently a ‘transformation’ in store, and jobs won’t be axed ; no, they will be ‘transformed’ before our eyes into… non-jobs, if you happen to be among the unlucky legion of 1,900 who are being lined up for transformation... More>>

ALSO:

Christchurch Mental Health: Hospital Too 'Awful' For Reviewers To Visit

Jonathan Coleman has to stop the stalling over a new building for mental health services in Christchurch to replace the quake damaged Princess Margaret Hospital, says Labour’s Health spokesperson David Clark... More>>

ALSO:

Greens Call For Govt Action: Children Sick Because Of NZ Housing

The Royal Australasian College of Physicians president-elect said today that children with preventable respiratory illnesses are being re-admitted to hospital because they're being sent back to cold, damp homes. More>>

ALSO:

Less Tax Cut, More Spending: Labour Launches Fiscal Plan

“Labour will invest $8 billion more in health, $4 billion more in education and $5 billion more for Kiwi families through Working for Families, Best Start and the Winter Energy Payment than the Budget 2017 projections for the forecast period.” More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Greens’ Room For Political Pragmatism

The Greens here are currently being criticized by the commentariat for not making the same kind of pragmatic choices that sunk the Democrats in Australia. More>>

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election