Like most Americans, I love what the 4th of July stands for. Not only is it one of the most important days in our history, but it's one of the most celebrated days of the year. We get together with friends and family, BBQ in the backyard and just enjoy being together. It's all a great time, that is, until the sun goes down. That's when the fireworks start going off, and as someone living with PTSD, I have to say, I dread it.
Veterans and non vets who suffer from PTSD experience the pops and bangs on a completely different level from the rest of you. It's not enjoyable, in fact it often causes panic attacks or flashbacks. I spend weeks worrying about it and the suffer through the day. The whole episode can have truly damaging effects.
If that doesn't convince you not to go firework crazy, consider this; dogs and cats hate them too. They horrify my dog Sophia, she will shake for hours. Every year, pets run away from home during the 4th of July display, many of them are never found again. That's thousands of families who lose a loved one because their animals have noise phobia.
This year, I have asked my neighbors to consider not lighting fireworks and instead celebrate by watching a firework display on TV or attending a planned public display so folks like me can know where to avoid going. Now, I want to ask you to do the same.
Fireworks cause real pain for people and animals. Please sign and pledge to not