Nebraskans love their fireworks

Tuesday, June 30, 2020

A year ago some wag suggested, only partly in jest, that an extra sales tax be imposed on fireworks sales with the proceeds going to the McCook Humane Society to help care for the dogs that wind up there after being scared by all the explosions.

Perhaps part of the proceeds should go to pet owners to help pay for cleaning carpets soiled because Fido refuses to go outside to do his business.

We really can’t blame anyone who feels the urge to let off a little steam, especially this year, by igniting a few pyrotechnics in the name of freedom.

But we hope they’ll do so safely, keeping in mind how dry the countryside is and keeping water handy. Or, consider taking in a public display, keeping social distancing in mind. McCook Christian Church’s “Freedom Festival” Thursday night will include fireworks at dusk at the Red Willow County Fairgrounds.

Indianola Fire and Rescue plans fireworks as well as food and fun Friday evening at the ballfields, and you can catch fireworks at dark in Arapahoe and Culbertson on Saturday the 4th.

Yes, we Nebraskans do enjoy our fireworks.

How much?

Career website Zippia.com has released a report that indicates Nebraskans buy more fireworks, per capita, than any state other than Missouri.

It’s ironic that America celebrates its independence by buying $319 million worth of fireworks (last year) from China, which produces 90% of the world’s fireworks.

Nebraska imports more than our share of those fireworks, 11,182,825 individual fireworks, or 5.9 per person.

That’s ahead of 4.2 per capita in Kansas, but far behind the leader, Missouri, with 6.9 per person. As an aside, because of permissive regulations, we’re sure many of those fireworks from the show-me state wind up elsewhere.

However you choose to celebrate Independence Day, we hope you’ll do so safely, whether it includes your own fireworks, watching someone else’s, or none at all.

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