Dr Michelle Dickinson, Auckland University Professor and nanotechnologist has agreed to debate Professor Paul Connett, Senior Advisor to the Fluoride Action Network. She will be inviting Sir Peter Gluckman to join her in this debate with Professor Connett. Dr Dickinson has studied fluoride for seven years as part of her Master’s and PhD work.
“It’s a debate that I think needs to happen”, said Dickinson. She has been an outspoken critic of people opposed to fluoridation on her ‘Nanogirl’ science blog. She wrote an opinion piece for the Herald asserting that New Zealand District Health Boards should be managing the control of Ministry of Health fluoridation policy saying, “some local bodies have spent a great deal of time and ratepayers’ money addressing the lobbying efforts of the scientifically misinformed.”
Professor Connett has said it took him 12 years to find his first fluoridation opponent to debate in New Zealand when he took on Dr Mike Berridge of the Malaghan Institute in a FaceTV feature in August 2016, moderated by well-known television journalist Cameron Bennett. In that debate, Professor Connett accused the Prime Minister’s Chief Science Advisor Peter Gluckman of relying on “junk science” to support the continuation of fluoridation in New Zealand.
“I am still waiting for any pro-fluoridation scientist to give me a list of primary studies (not self-serving government reviews) that give him or her the confidence to ignore the over 300 animal and human studies that indicate that fluoride can damage the brain.” See Fluoride-Brain and Fluoride EPA Petition.
Dickinson is hopeful that Sir Peter Gluckman will front the debate with her, saying, “I’d be happy to team up with Gluckman if he agreed to it”. Fluoride Free New Zealand’s media spokesperson 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.”
Even if Sir Peter Gluckman is unwilling to make an appearance, Dickinson is on record saying that she will provide her opinion on the Fluoride-IQ studies, saying, “I’m also happy to talk about how there is no evidence for IQ loss in fluoride studies if you like. The science is quite clear.”
Having Dr Dickinson, a very well-known scientist and science communicator willing to debate alongside Professor Gluckman is significant. The stage is now set for a massive showdown on the science of fluoridation.