4th of July fireworks over Downtown San Diego. Image via San Diego Shooter/Flickr
By the Left Coast Rebel
California and San Diego in particular are in the news again. It's not just Kooky-California that may be affected by this story though, so pay attention:
(Signonsandiego.com) San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders went on the offensive Tuesday with a live national interview on Fox News about July Fourth fireworks displays in the city that are up in the air after a court ruling Friday said they needed a potentially costly and time-consuming environmental review.
“People are absolutely outraged,” Sanders told the midday audience. “It’s an abuse of the laws that turned this into some type of sham.”
He also told viewers that Friday's decision "could affect fireworks displays all over the U.S.," including those in the nation's capital. While many residents support the fireworks shows, others worry about the noise, garbage and pollution they generate.
Friday’s ruling by Judge Linda Quinn draws in a vast array of activities permitted by San Diego, from birthday parties in parks to events that close down streets. If it stands, lawyers said they also would need review under the California Environmental Quality Act of 1970, which is designed to minimize all sorts of ecological damage.
Quinn’s ruling sparked national interest in what had mostly been a regional issue, with thousands of people sharing the story through Facebook and logging hundreds of comments on signonsandiego.com. The debate pits two American values — environmental protection and Independence Day festivities — against each other.
Fireworks permitting has been under scrutiny in San Diego for the past year after the Coastal Environmental Rights Foundation unsuccessfully sued to stop the 2010 Independence Day pyrotechnics in La Jolla. In May, regional water quality regulators said fireworks over water do need a permit under the Clean Water Act.
San Diego mayor Jerry Sanders discusses the "controversy", from Fox News yesterday:
Riddle me this: are leftists and environmentalist (one and the same) going after fireworks shows in California because they represent a clear and present danger to the ecosystem or is it because fireworks shows celebrate patriotic things like Independence Day?
My guess is that the patriotic component has a lot to do with the attack. This ludicrous story fulfills a simple adage: give regulators an inch of your liberty and they will take a mile (and everything).
It's high time we stood up the the environmental-extremist lobby.