This probably will surprise you. I actually agree with County Council member Kai Hagen that releasing a mass number of balloons for some type of cause or party is ridiculous.
But is it such a problem in Frederick County that we needed a law to ban it? Is it such a problem that valuable County Council time needed to be spent on it with meetings and a public hearing? I don’t think so. Now, I think we have a much more serious problem in the city of Frederick and Frederick County with loitering, panhandling, vagrancy and cigarette butts. Yes, cigarette butts.
Yet, when asked about these issues those in power will say our hands are tied as it’s a constitutional issue with enforcement. Crazy, but apparently we can now go after those releasing balloons but nothing can be done when you throw a cigarette butt on the ground. In downtown Frederick you will find hundreds on the sidewalks. I don’t like to see a ban of smoking in public places like sidewalks, but I also feel I would rather see a ticket written for littering than releasing a balloon.
I thank those responsible smokers for not throwing their butts on the ground.
Government is not there to be over reaching but law enforcement is there to keep us in the parameters of the law. As I have stated before, those that need help and want help, we should do all we can to help them with the type of help they need. But loitering, panhandling and vagrancy have become an issue. I’m talking about those that are hampering the quality of life of others and those trying to run a business. Now, without question there are more mental health issues in society today than ever before in all age groups. Funding needs to be expanding to address this need. Focusing on the needs of the working poor and homeless is very important but we should not think a warm bed and hot meal will solve all the problems. The mental health issues have to be focused. We seem to want to find the magic solution or want the next grandiose idea from our government. We just need to get back to basics and focus on getting those right again. Having a clean, safe and affordable community for all.