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Archive for Tuesday, July 16, 2002

Holiday marred

July 16, 2002

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To the editor:

Independence Day used to be one of my favorite holidays. However, since moving to Lawrence, I have learned to dread the Fourth of July. This is the first time I have lived in a place where it is legal to use fireworks in residential neighborhoods.

The noise started in my neighborhood June 30 and did not cease until July 6. One morning at 7:30, two young neighborhood children lit firecrackers continuously for an hour. There was no adult in sight.

Wednesday night is when things really got out of control. The neighborhood was treated to three hours of almost non-stop noise and smoke. The night of the 4th was even worse, this time lasting about five hours, finally subsiding a little past 1 a.m. During this time, I was holed up in my house trying to calm my two dogs, who, although sedated, were still made miserably anxious by the noise.

The next day my yard was littered with the burnt remains of fireworks including numerous illegal bottle-rockets, two of which I found on my roof. The edges of the street to the south side of my house are still layered with fireworks trash.

Perhaps my experience is uncommon. Perhaps my neighborhood is particularly fireworks happy. Nonetheless, I don't think people should be made to feel unsafe in their homes, even if it is only for one week a year. If what some or even many people consider fun, is dangerous to the community, and impinges on the comfort of their neighbors, it should not be legal.

Liz Weston,

Lawrence

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