After years of prohibiting the public sale of fireworks, the Maine Legislature has come around 180 degrees and will hereafter allow citizens to blow themselves up with impunity. The good Reverend Peppard calls it clear evidence that the state is moving toward the abyss, and on Sunday he droned on at some length about how Maine is rapidly becoming economically reliant on things with the potential for personal harm. His recitation of facts and figures on the lusty revenues from alcohol, tobacco, and gambling served to put more than the usual number of worshipers to sleep before he went on to elaborate on fireworks as yet another example of accelerating decadence.
When the long service was over, it seemed the congregation was about equally divided. The organist Thelma McCracken thought Peppard was right—but then, she almost always agrees with the man who pays her salary. Durwood Green, who burned down a boathouse with a Roman candle one Fourth of July when he was a kid, said the new law was "enlightened legislation." My friend Nibber came down in the middle. He called for a year's delay in the implementation of the law to give the legislators time to try the idea out on themselves.
Allie Knight is a moderate as well. She said later at Knight's General Store that she would tell the Governor the same thing she tells her uncountable kids whenever they insist on risky behavior. "Go ahead," she tells them, "but if you break your leg, don’t come running to me."