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Oooh, Ahhh, Argghh: Hatin’ on Fireworks

 by Keith Goetzman


Tags: Politics, culture, fireworks, Fourth of July, environment, health, animals,

Toxic fireworksFireworks: Who could hate them? Plenty of people, it turns out:

Chris Conway hates fireworks for their “toxic consequences to our personal and environmental health.”

Troy Patterson at Slate hates fireworks for their “pomposity, aggression, triumphalism, and hubris.”

The U.K. campaign Ban the Bang hates fireworks because “all kinds of wild and domestic animals, but also children, the elderly and those of a nervous disposition can be seriously affected by modern, excessive fireworks.”

And finally, the blogger TexasLiberal hates fireworks because they’re dangerous, there’s a drought in his area (Houston), and you ought to be reading a book instead.

Or making fireworks out of yarn.

Happy Fourth of July. Kaboom!

Sources: Toxic Fireworks, Slate, Ban the Bang, TexasLiberal, Craft 

Image courtesy of Chris Conway. 

amy hannon
7/4/2011 7:49:09 AM

Fireworks for all their expense, harm, or nuisance are as mesmerizing as gazing into a flame. They can be beautiful and awe-inspiring even ritualistic mimesis of the Big Bang. They are vivid and animated mandalas of light in the night sky. I always thought that we should substitute fireworks for nuclear weapons -- maybe even stage international contests-- as both appealed to a similar primal urge for the sight of a cosmic flare -- but with far fewer harms or costs. Substitute the desired image for the real harm. But sure sunrises, sunsets, and lightning or the Northern Lights should be enough to feed our need for a dramatic taste of cosmic fire. And yes, thunder should suffice for the terror induced by cherry bombs.


cyd wright
7/6/2009 2:48:22 PM

Wow! sure is nice to know I'm not the only one who hates fireworks!! I hate em for all the stated reasons and then some. My older brothers used to throw lit fireworks at me when I was little. They thought it was funny. I also remember being forced to go see a fireworks diplay when i was 4 yrs and screaming my lungs out during the entire show(because the noise from the explosions completely freaked me out) begging my parents to let me hide in the car.I've also had idiot neighbors throw lit fireworks up on top of metal covered parking. It amplifies it about 10X, freaking out all the little kids, babies, critters and folks like me, for miles. My 4 cats and my puppy also hate fireworks.


texas liberal
7/3/2009 9:32:20 PM

Yeah--Go read a book instead. Thanks for the link from such a great magazine.