Letter at length, October 13

A fireworks ban should be good for all Ashland

We just experienced what a frightening forest fire can do to Ashland. In the Sept. 30 issue of the Daily Tidings, Fire Chief John Karns recommends that fireworks be limited to below Siskiyou Boulevard (see article "Chief: Limit fireworks"). This is brilliant and a long time coming in order to protect the urban wild lands, homes and forests of our hill area.

When we first moved here, we could not believe that Ashland allowed "safe and sane" fireworks within its city limits. However, those of us who live below Siskiyou Boulevard are already in a "war zone" on the Fourth of July.

Asking those who live above the boulevard to bring their "safe and sane" fireworks below the boulevard would be tantamount to the "shock and awe" that was rained on Baghdad at the beginning of the Iraq war.

We already suffer from Fourth of July post-traumatic stress, and that should be enough to appease the "God" of fireworks!

With all of Ashland firing off their fireworks, it would surely increase the chances of a fire below the boulevard. Perhaps fire trucks should be at the ready, but the streets are so choked with smoke, kids and cars that police cars can't even get through!

We always find burned bottle rockets in our back yard and stay home to protect life, limb and property from the "safe and sane" war on the streets. We appreciate the city sending the street sweeper on July 5, but this is a cost that the city would save if fireworks were eliminated!

I'm sure the children of Ashland would be disappointed if fireworks were banned, but adults and professionals like Fire Chief Karns and the community leaders of Ashland need to lead the children instead of the other way around.

If you care about this issue, ask the fire chief and City Council to make a decision that is equitable and good for all and not just good for some at the Oct. 20, 7 p.m. council meeting.

Sally McKirgan


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