New Bedford Fireworks Safer Politically Than Whaling City Festival [OPINION]
Our daily schlog through the local bullcrap takes us back to Buttonwood Park with a stop-off for the Fourth of July fireworks. Yes, fireworks. There will be Fourth of July fireworks in New Bedford this year now that the plague appears to have subsided.
A couple of weeks ago, while I was gazing up at the heads of the storied past presidents that sit atop Mount Rushmore, our local fearless leader, Mayor Jon Mitchell, was telling Phil Paleologos all about the Fourth of July fireworks display to be held over New Bedford Harbor on Sunday, July 3. That's awesome news since His Honor canceled last year's display due to concerns about COVID-19.
The fireworks could draw tens of thousands of spectators to the downtown and waterfront areas as well as to Pope's Island, the Fairhaven waterfront, and South Dartmouth. Wonderful! The people deserve some fun. It has been a rough year or so since fun was banished with the advent of COVID. No fairs, no festivals, no parades, and no fireworks. The return of the fireworks is fabulous news.
But wait, how is it that tens of thousands of spectators can safely fill every little nook and cranny from the downtown and waterfront areas, as well as Pope's Island, the Fairhaven waterfront, and South Dartmouth, without posing a great risk to human existence? Don't forget, we have just been told that gathering between 6 p.m. and 9 p.m. at Buttonwood Park for the Whaling City Festival in July could pose a significant health threat. You know, COVID and all?
Mayor Mitchell says we are not out of the woods yet with COVID. We can't have all of those yahoos spreading viruses around Buttonwood Park between 6 p.m. and 9 p.m. But I guess the Board of Health is okay with cramming the masses together in the downtown and waterfront areas as well as Pope's Island, the Fairhaven waterfront, and South Dartmouth at 9 p.m. for fireworks. Glad they cleared all of that up because by BS meter was about to shatter glass.
Just remember, the fireworks make the mayor look good. The Whaling City Festival pisses off many of his supporters, not to mention that it is only blocks from the Mitchell's home. You do the math.
Barry Richard is the host of The Barry Richard Show on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard weekdays from noon to 3 p.m. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @BarryJRichard58. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.