Legalize fireworks to save Ohioans from being liars
I am the father of four boys, the youngest 15. The youngest asked me last week, “Dad, why does our state have a law that states that setting off fireworks in the state is illegal but we sell them here, and everyone sets them off and no one is arrested?”
I thought it was a great question and something we have all thought about ourselves when we buy fireworks. We have huge fireworks stores that we all go to every year. You purchase fireworks for Independence Day, sign a form that everyone knows is a lie. The form states that “ you will take the fireworks out of state and will not set them off in Ohio.”
I don’t know how to answer my boy without confusing the situation further in his mind about some of our most ridiculous, unenforced, state laws that should have never been implemented. Then I started to think about how large this state agency that regulates the fireworks industry in Ohio is. How big is its budget each year to file all the paperwork of all Ohioans who lie by promising each year not to set off their fireworks in Ohio? Isn’t falsifying a government document also a crime?
Every Ohioan breaks this law, but no one is arrested for setting the fireworks off in Ohio (unless they are drunk or reckless). The police look the other way. We all know it. And I’m glad they do because setting off fireworks is a celebration of our freedom. How ironic.
In today’s day and age, can we be honest with ourselves and in the State House and repeal this ridiculous law that is not enforced by police and basically requires every Ohio resident to lie by stating they will not set off their fireworks in Ohio?
I mean, seriously, we expect our children to obey all laws, but yet we take them to places to purchase fireworks and sign bogus forms.
I ask any elected state official to please explain how we, as parents, are supposed to explain to a child that this law is legitimate at all. My son said to me, “so everyone here is lying when they sign the form and the police don’t enforce the law? What’s the point, Dad?” Once again, I had no answer for the boy that made sense.
It’s a great question I don’t know how to answer. So, I ask again, Ohio State Legislature? Please advise.
Pat White, Poland