"Safe and sane" is Huntington Beach's approach to fireworks. Sounds great, a nice bit of flashy entertainment for the kids in the driveway, no explosives or projectiles, a little hiss and a bit of a pop.
The reality is far from that. In the downtown area on the Fourth, the smoke was thick and the sound resembled arial bombing. Professional-quality explosives that arched high and wide in the sky were launched for hours accompanied by heavy-duty mortars that rocked our downtown area.
The fireworks were bigger, louder and longer than we have experienced in the past.
Is this a result of the legalization of fireworks in our city? Maybe, maybe not, but how can we control the war zone that the downtown area became on the Fourth?
Police called to our neighborhood were no-shows. So really, how do we eliminate the illegal aspect of the evening without the ability to enforce?
I strongly feel that we must find an answer to this in order to continue with any legal fireworks in our city. I would definitely support a public vote on whether Huntington Beach should allow "safe and sane" fireworks in the future.
Margo Cormier and Nesip Tarcan
At least ban will bring Hefty profits
First off, thank you Judy Russell for your insight into the paper bag charge boondoggle, "What's the logic behind charging for paper bags?" Mailbag, July 11.
I thought of this months ago and it really makes you wonder if this is it just a shrewd free-market move. Profiteers wouldn't be behind this by any chance now would they?
That being said, I must now confess that as an opponent of the plastic ban, I have to do the honorable thing that politicians do and flip-flop my stance.
I realized that there is a profit to be made on this fiasco via legal financial investing. I have adjusted my investment portfolio to now include copious amounts of stock in the manufacturers of Hefty and Glad trash bags. It is a no brainer. Consumption of these products to replace grocery bags will skyrocket and I will get rich.
Unfortunately, the same types of plastic will be down at Huntington Beach again by way of the rivers or campers, but hey, I scored on the free-market demand. The best part is that with my "Hefty" profit, which I am "Glad" to get, I can now send bigger donations to the Surf Rider Foundation, Sierra Club and Green Peace.
Politics and the free market make strange bedfellows.