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With the Fourth of July right around the corner, the topic of fireworks always comes to the forefront.  And when they are front and center, the discussion of whether or not to continue to allow fireworks to be sold and employed within city limits always seems to be debated.  The Shreveport City Council did have a resolution introduced at one time by councilman James Green to ban fireworks within the city, but that resolution ended up being changed, then eventually rejected.

Fourth Of July Items Go On Sale
Photo by Tim Boyle/Getty Images

Many people have very fond memories of fireworks from their childhood.  It seemed to signify a time with family. It meant going to the fireworks stand with your father or uncle and picking out your favorites like sparklers, bottle rockets, smoke bombs and Black Cats.  When you heard fireworks for the first time around the Fourth of July, or maybe before Christmas or New Years... it meant a holiday was imminent.  You looked forward to being out of school, and getting together with family. Even today, when I start hearing fireworks around the neighborhood, it brings me back to a simpler time.  And I know a holiday is near!

But there is another side to the debate.  Opponents say fireworks today are not the fireworks of our youth. The fireworks today are much more powerful, and much more destructive.  A Roman Candle back in the day would fire colored 'balls of fire' one at a time into the air.  Today, you can buy fireworks that almost rival professional fireworks displays, exploding into huge, multi-colored designs and patterns.

Animal rights activists will tell you todays fireworks are also much louder, causing distress to pets that don't understand this is just meant for celebration.  Many dogs are traumatized by thunderstorms and loud noises, and fireworks season means a very stressful time for pets and their owners.  And there is not a simple answer.

According to the Louisiana State Fire Marshal, over 200 people go to the emergency room every day with fireworks related injuries in the month around the Fourth of July. The Louisiana State Fire Marshal issued some fireworks safety tips, to help prevent you from becoming a part of those statistics.

Detonate devices at least 200 feet away from structures, vehicles and rubbish

Never allow children to light fireworks

Never operate fireworks while impaired

Light devices one at a time, and monitor embers released with a bucket of water or a hose nearby

Discard detonated items by watering them down to prevent reignition, and do not dispose of them into a trash container immediately, so as not to start a fire.

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