Letters: Done with fireworks

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Once again, fireworks are for sale in our city. Why do we continue do this? Most would say that it’s part of how we celebrate our country’s independence. The “rockets red glare, bombs bursting in air” and all that. Yet, some cities in California have banned fireworks sales to the public (e.g., Vacaville). Why is that? Have they lost their patriotic zeal? Do they no longer support youth sports?

No, they’ve actually come to their senses! They realized that after so many lives, structures and dollars have been lost to recent fires, they see no purpose in adding to the risk of more damage and heartbreak by putting hundreds of explosives on the street…in the hands of who knows who.

For Winters officials to avert their eyes to these risks simply for the sake of dollars generated to a few nonprofits, or some neighborhood fun, or because of political pressure is irresponsible. What would be wrong with a laser light show, for example? Wouldn’t that suffice? If nothing else, a light show wouldn’t pollute our environment as fireworks do. And how about our pets? Many innocent animals are frightened by the incessant booms and bangs.

And if that weren’t enough, do we really need to teach every new generation that there’s a good deal of fun to be had in blowing things up? Really? In today’s America? The closest fireworks stand near me is called “TNT” for goodness sakes! There’s a not so subtle message that comes with firework sales and exhibitions — i.e., here in America we like seeing things blow up…it’s so fun in fact that we’ll even pay to watch it. Is this who we want to be? Is this the message we want to send to our young people?

Surely we can do something smarter and just as fun to celebrate our country’s independence. Enough is enough when it comes to fireworks! No more.

Bob Polkinghorn

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