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MN lawmaker wants to let freedom ring with more fireworks

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Perhaps looking for more bang in his Independence Day buck, a Minnesota lawmaker has used the national holiday to call for more fireworks to be sold in his state.

Sen. Torrey Westrom, R-Elbow Lake, says he plans to introduce a bill next session to legalize more fireworks in Minnesota, Minnesota Public Radio reports, and Westrom says his bill would allow Minnesotans to sell and use fireworks like bottle rockets, firecrackers and Roman candles.

Now we're talkin'. None of those weak little sparklers that are legal in the state.

But there's sensible opposition.

“The concept that we’d have aerial fireworks come back seems like a lot of fun for the backyards, it comes with it a health risk that is inherently unavoidable and is a concern for eye care providers,” an eye surgeon at the University of Minnesota tells MPR.

Yeah, but what about fun? Westrom also points out that nearby states already sell the things that go boom in the night, and Minnesotans cross borders all the time to buy better explosives.

Gov. Mark Dayton vetoed a bill that would have allowed for the expansion of fireworks in 2012, MPR points out. In his veto letter, Dayton expressed concern for an increase injuries and property damage.

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