Letters to the Editor: Do not use fireworks in Bend; Change Legislation on Gross sales of Liquor and Gasoline; Alcohol and gasoline legal guidelines must be modified | opinion

This year’s ban on personal use of fireworks is due to the risk of fire. You, dear reader, can rest assured that you are using fireworks safely and responsibly. Unfortunately, not everyone in possession of fireworks uses them safely and responsibly. The heat and drought this year creates a real fire hazard. Fireworks can and do add to the risk. When you start a fire, you endanger the right to property and life of others. Of course, I support your freedom to celebrate with fireworks when you celebrate where no one else is impaired.

I’ve always enjoyed celebrating July 4th with the neighborhood fireworks tradition, even when trying to comfort a desperate pet. Recently I have read and heard the concerns of those affected by the booming / hissing / exploding noise and have come to the realization that if we celebrate in a way that harms others, even if the harm suffered, we are not celebrating freedom and freedom is anger, stress and fear.

Raise the flag! Wear your red, white, and blue. Enjoy friends, family, hot dogs and apple pie. Celebrate freedom. Celebrate being free from danger and stress without violating the freedom of others and you will celebrate as a true American patriot.

– Shannon Benhoff-Adams, Bend

Interesting that the editorial on Selling Liquor and Gasoline in Oregon was published just a day after I pondered the same two articles. What are we? The only of two states in the country where someone has to pump gasoline for us and we have to go to a separate store to buy bourbon – and expensive bourbon at that.

We can certainly pump our own gas. The rest of the nation, even the world, has managed to figure out the intricacies of opening the gas cap and inserting the hose. Plus, we don’t have to give our credit card to anyone we don’t know!

As someone who recently moved here, I was a little incredulous that I had to go to a state-controlled liquor store to buy liquor. Haven’t seen anything like this since living in Saskatchewan, Canada! It’s time to move on. Speaking of which, my house bourbon is twice as much here as the grocery store I lived in in San Diego. Now when we visit old friends we come back with a back seat full of cheap booze.

– Joe Boldt, Prineville

There is simply no reason our state only sells liquor in government-sanctioned stores. They are not owned or operated by the state, as stated in the June 29 editorial, although there are some states that do. With the second highest liquor excise tax in the country, there’s no reason not to allow grocery stores to sell liquor. I also oppose the idea that amending the directive would put existing government-sanctioned liquor stores out of service. Poppycock, consumers will go where the price is best and I firmly believe in competition so pricing between all participating stores would be key to success as Americans, as we all know, will go 15 miles, to save a dollar. To claim that increasing access to liquor will increase the rate of alcoholism is deceptive, as addiction drives all addictions and the limitation of places of sale makes no difference to the alcoholic. So my wife and I just go to Dorris, California once a year to get our annual supply of liquor, and the savings are huge. It is sad to see the revenue leaving our state, but our budget is our budget and we don’t like to be gouged out.

Then your own gas is pumped. If you don’t have any physical disabilities, pumping your own gas is easy and faster than waiting for a companion. I am sure that there will still be some full-service stations here and there IF there is a market for them. But for Pete’s sake, Oregon, it’s time to finally let Oregonians put on their big girls and big boys pants to grow up and pump their own gas in my opinion – not to do so is just silly.