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Letters to the Editor

July 01, 2009

'Wall of separation' only serves as hiding place



To the editor:

Allan Powell's rant on the "wall of separation" ("Separation of church, state an idea worth keeping," Friday, June 19, page A4) struck me as odd for its timing. It sounds like beating a dead horse. For the time being, the God of this world continues to rule.

C'mon, professor, we Christians can't even get our belief in creation mentioned in the schools, let alone Jesus, the Bible and prayer in the name of Christ.

And some actually believe this is, or was, a Christian nation. Apparently, the word "religion" in the First Amendment means anything but Christian.

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You can gloat, Mr. Secularist, and hide behind your wall, but while you're blinded by the light, the world is going to hell. As it is written, "Wisdom is justified of her children" and "Professing themselves to be wise, they become fools."

David Lopoten
Hedgesville, W.Va.




Time is overdue to change fireworks laws



To the editor:

The time is long overdue to change the fireworks laws in this state to provide for sensible and regulated use of all consumer fireworks. Forty-five states now allow some level of consumer fireworks, and the national trend has been to liberalize fireworks laws.

Statistics released by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission show a reduction from 12,500 estimated fireworks-related injuries in 1994 to 9,800 in 2007, a reduction of more than 21 percent.

In 1994, American imported 117 million pounds of fireworks, rising to 265.5 million pounds in 2007, an increase of more than 125 percent. When you factor in usage, based on injuries per 100,000 pounds of fireworks used, the fireworks-related injuries reduced by 65.42 percent from 1994 to 2007. That is impressive.

Most consumer products with which any degree of risk is associated, such as ATVs, jet skis, trampolines and the like, produce increased injuries along with increased use. Not so with consumer fireworks, where use has increased and injuries have decreased.

We have an American fireworks-buying public that respects the products and follows the suggested safety rules to keep fireworks use safe and injuries down.

Despite the overwhelming evidence, anti-fireworks groups continue to misrepresent the truth about fireworks-related injuries. The facts cannot be disputed. Fireworks-related injuries have decreased at a time when fireworks use has significantly increased.

Write or e-mail your state legislator and ask the legislature reconsider the outdated consumer fireworks laws. Tell your legislator you support the right to celebrate freedom with fireworks, and you support the sensible and regulated use of consumer fireworks.

Please enjoy the Independence Day holiday with your family and celebrate safety.

William A. Weimer
vice president, Phantom Fireworks
Youngstown, Ohio

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