A day or two ago, I put on a link to the Dr. Strangelove film which had the US general who launched the missiles depicted as a person who had gone noisily mad. His prime obsession was that the Commies by promoting the fluoridisation of water were destroying the American people.
This coincided with one or two items elsewhere about chemicals and water. Another was an article pointing out that the world could face a severe water shortage for its populations very soon. There is a lot less fresh water to be had, mostly contained in ice fields and sea water has its limitation.
Along with this was a comment on the Sub Rosa blog doing a re-run of the DHMO spoof, allegedly dihydrogen monoxide, which suggests that anyone raising questions about the extent and nature of chemical use are the sort of people who would call water dangerous.
Allowing for the fact that drowning can occur and that too much water too quickly as in major floods or tsunamis may have adverse effects there is the breezy assumption in much of the developed and Western World that fresh water is safe.
Our British and Irish ancestors did not think so and were often reluctant to drink it raw because it was so often contaminated and a carrier of diseases and other substances. It was safer to drink beer or almost anything else.
In recent decades there have been moves to not just treat water to decontaminate it but to add chemicals in order to deal with other problems, notably fluoride to avoid the effect on the teeth of eating too many sugars.
Now that we have had a few decades of this the case is being made that we might be a lot better off without all the sugars and for that matter the fluoride. Necessarily, this involves major companies, lobbying, politics and all the clatter that follows.
In the USA there is now a row developing over the apparent tactic by the companies involved to ban attempts to end fluoride treatment by law and the long run consequences of this form of using the water supply to deal with other problems. This link to the Dr. Mercola site gives a longish discussion of the issue.
This one will run and run or at least until the water supply runs out.