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Should we change our name?

Should Washington Action for Safe Water change its name?

Should we be Fluoride Free Washington? What do you think?


From Golda:

I’ve been pondering this comment.  At first I kinda shook my head in agreement but the term continues to come up.  I just did a search for the popularity of the term Fluoride Free.  At this point it appears that this might be our best name yet. 

Popularity of using Fluoride Free:

Fluoride Free Windsor
Fluoride Free Austin
Fluoride Free Fairbanks
Fluoride Free Sacramento
Fluoride Free Australia
Fluoride Free NZ
Fluoride Free Wexford
Fluoride Free Portsmouth
Fluoride Free Murray River
Fluoride Free Moncton, Canada
Fluoride Free Winnipeg
Perth Fluoride Free, Australia
Fluoride Free Florida
Fluoride Free
Taranaki, NZ
Fluoride Free Waterloo
Fluoride Free Britain
Fluoride Free Yuma
Fluoride Free Findlay
Fluoride Free Ireland
Fluoride Free World
Fluoride Free New York City

By far the most popular term for anti-fluoridation organizations is Fluoride Free ______.  It could be a strong element of bonding us with worldwide anti-fluoride orgs.  Worth considering seriously.

Golda Starr


From Bill:

Indeed.  FAN has been encouraging the term Fluoride Free.

A very positive term.

If I were going to start from scratch, or if it were up to me, I would use the term “Fluoride Free Washington.”

In fact, keeping WASW and starting FFW would also be a good idea.

Right now I’m working with Fluoride Free TV (Tualatin Valley).

People know we are not Fluoride Free at this time, so I don’t think most people would jump to the conclusion that Washington is already Fluoride Free.

I’m not good at marketing and have no preference.



From James:

Over half the people think fluoride is good and think anti-fluoride people are nut jobs.

We come in and say we are looking at all aspects of water safety.

We are not just against fluoride. We are against lead, arsenic, cadmium, mercury, lithium, statins in water. And maybe aluminum flocculent.

Maybe we should take a stand against Weed and Feed atrazine in lawn fertilizer. Why is it legal for people to put a powerful poison on their lawns?

And we are against a particular kind of fluoride especially, silicofluoride, because it leaches lead and is an enzyme interrupter, although in the last sentence we always say we are against any kind of fluoride in water.

And we have some allies who are pro-fluoride. Some are in favor of fluoride applied topically but opposed to putting it in the water because the dose cannot be controlled and because of the type of industrial waste fluoride used.

I am opposed to topical fluoride across the board, but I am willing to make allies with pro-topical fluoride people to stop water fluoridation.

WASW is a good name. It sounds objective. It allows us to attack water fluoridation specifically without attacking topical fluoride.

WASW offers more angles of attack than Fluoride Free Washington.

We are the objective protectors of our water.

So I think we should be happy that we have such a good name. That’s just my opinion. I’ll go with the majority opinion.



What do you think?

  1. December 4th, 2011 at 02:58 | #1

    This is an interesting question. There have been -how many?- 200 successful campaigns by organized groups. Is there a list somewhere – at FAN??- of the successes and the name of the group that got the job done? If “FLUORIDE FREE ___________ ” was a dominate name it just might be worth a name change. May be statistically significant

    It doesn’t mean you have to give up WASA. Just as corporations can have a name AND a DBA (doing business as) .


  2. December 3rd, 2011 at 23:13 | #2

    If WASW truly expends as much time and effort on other aspects of water safety as it does on fluoride, then it’s appropriately named. However, that’s not true of most anti-fluoridation advocacy groups, and, after careful consideration, I believe a strong across-the-board Fluoride Free ______________ presence would make an excellent unifying theme for our movement as a whole. It’s succinct and catchy and the alliteration of the first two words is a plus.

    When I first adopted the Fluoride Free Austin name unilaterally three years ago, I actually had to defend my choice – not because so many people think fluoride is good and antifluori-dationists are nut jobs but because some strong voices among us thought the word was “too negative”, a turnoff, bad karma, reminiscent of Dr. Strangelove, and the like. While I understood and respected their point of view, I felt it made no sense to crusade against something without naming it, and that if things were that far gone, we might as well throw in the towel. So I stuck to my guns despite some early doubts, and today we’re all happy with our “brand’s” success.

    The further argument that “Fluoride Free” doesn’t mean 100% fluoride free is also well taken, but a similar objection could be raised with any other name given to an organization that focuses principally on ending the fluoridation of drinking water. “Clean water” doesn’t entirely cut it, because the addition of fluoride to water doesn’t make it “dirty” in the commonly accepted sense. And turning off the fluoride tap alone won’t make water still contaminated with industrial and pharmaceutical wastes completely safe – just safer than it was before. I think most people understand “fluoride free” in our context to mean tapwater free of artificially-added fluoride. Let’s concentrate on getting rid of that first, and then we can change our names to something else. 🙂

  3. charlotte hunt
    December 3rd, 2011 at 21:32 | #3

    Why not have both names. Fluoride Free could be apart of the overall movement to have safe water as a right for everyone. If you decide on Fluoride Free as a name change,I vote Fluoride Free Washington.

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