Summer fun now comes with less bang, more worry

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It appears it’s getting pretty tough for kids to have traditional summer fun.
Some metro areas banned the shooting of Fourth of July fireworks all together. Many other communities shortened the legal firing of fireworks for three days only or less. For many states the sale of some old traditional fireworks such as firecrackers, candles, rockets, and other “big bang” items have been prohibited. In one short observation, you might say it is becoming a quiet Fourth for many young and old alike.
Another summertime entertainment is coming with a word of caution. That is swimming or simply going to the beach or pool. If you live near the ocean you are warned about shark attacks and the stings from jellyfish. Those of you going to rivers, lakes or pools are being warned about a parasite called “Crypto” that causes diarrhea.
It seems like us oldsters better hang on to our past memories of enjoying the loud bang from our lighting of cherry bombs and then when we “graduated” from sparklers to holding Roman Candles. I must also admit I don’t remember getting diarrhea by swimming in a farm pond, lake or swimming pool -- just the parent’s simple warning: “Be careful and don’t drown.”
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We’ve been told, the difference between the descriptive words “genius” and “stupidity” is that “genius” has its limits.
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A recent report tells over 50 percent of our land is now classified as “urbanized.” That statement makes us think initially it is getting too crowded for wildlife.
We should also be recognizing it may be getting too crowded for humans as well. Masses of land that once were available for crop and food production are now tracts of suburban homes, etc. Compounding the problem is the pollution of our aquifers, lakes, streams, as well as the rising ocean levels.
The growth of new environmental problems will face our future generations. Our tongue-in-check observation could mean in future years there could be more ocean and lake-front properties for a growing population. More importantly, however a serious next question: “Will there be enough food production and clean water to fill the stomachs and quench the thirst of the growing future generations?”
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Talk is cheap because supply exceeds demand.
 
RL Furse  is publisher emeritus of the News-Register

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