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State confers power — Elkhart Truth approves– of course.

The state legislature passed a new fireworks law that will give localities the right to control fireworks usage in whatever way they desire, except on certain designated dates — traditional fireworks holidays, mainly.

I wonder how effective this will be, in actuality. From my reading of it, the idea is to strengthen prohibitions on fireworks, mainly to deal with the noise nuisance, not the safety issues involved with explosives. OK, noise ordinances are fine, but I’m not sure they’re easily enforced. And who the heck has the time? I always question laws that appear to burden law enforcement with the task of chasing minor issues, instead of focusing on the really bad guys.

But what strikes me as odd is today’s Elkhart Truth editorial lauding the new legislation. I don’t much care one way or another about this law, but here’s what The Truth said in the closing lines:

The bill now goes to Gov. Mitch Daniels, who should quickly sign it. Then, as soon as they can, local governments should begin tailoring fireworks rules to suit the needs of their communities.

After all, there’s no point in having local authority if you’re not going to use it.

Does this mean that if a locality doesn’t want to use its authority to limit or “tailor” fireworks rules that there’s somehow no “point?” In some rural counties, maybe no rules are the best rules, but not, apparently, according to The Truth. In typical fashion, the paper reveals its preference for more control over peoples’ lives, as if that’s an end in itself. And I think that’s sad.

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