Bowing to the old and crabby

August 19th, 2011 by Ken

This November, the voters of Olympia will be able to determine if the city will ban the sale and use of fireworks within the city limits.

The Olympia City Council voted to send the issue to the people and their decision will be binding. If the voters say Yes to banning fireworks, they will join with the City of Lacey which did so in 2009.

I thought Lacey was wrong to do so and I think Olympia will be wrong if they join with Lacey.

Some residents, the old and the crabby, think that fireworks destroy their sense of calm and peace. That fireworks, and their noise, disturbs their sleep. Others complain that fireworks, particularly firecrackers, hurt their dogs and their hearing.

Some think that fireworks are dangerous and point to fires and other accidents associated with fireworks. But they would be wrong.

There have been no house fires associated with fireworks in Thurston County in decades – – maybe even never. There have been a few brush fires but those were rapidly extinguished by those setting off the fireworks.

Even the Olympia fire marshal testified that the number of incidents with fireworks over the past decade were “not extremely high.”

For more than 200 years fireworks have been the way Americans celebrate the Fourth of July. It’s a custom that we have grown accustomed to. The noise and the bustle – – the crack of firecrackers – – the bottle rockets lighting up the night sky – – even the constant barrage of noise on the Third and the Fourth – – are just remembrances of the freedom we have.

And yet, under the guise of peace and security, the wants of a few old and crabby, outweigh the rights we have to celebrate.

I think some people want fireworks banned because they feel that the government doesn’t have control. That allowing young people to use fireworks whenever and wherever they wants, smacks of anarchy and many people don’t like anarchy.

Keep in mind that the fireworks season only runs for a few days once a year; that very few fires have resulted; that no one has been seriously injured or hurt in this county in decades or even longer; and that a noisy night is the sound of freedom.

I suspect that Olympia residents will pass the ban. It passed in Lacey with just a little over 50 percent. Of course, Lacey has a lot of old and crabby people – – some of them still on the Lacey City Council.

Posted in Government, Informational, Local Politics

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