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Dreams Achieved With John Reo

John Armand Reo

John Reo was just getting started.  A few months into a great job towering over Earth’s greatest city, he was about to live on the same famously bustling island where he worked.  An exciting life featuring an impressive profession is a sign your 20s are going well.  There was every reason to hope it would continue.

Nothing’s breathtaking like an office over a thousand feet in the sky.  John worked in the paragon of skyscrapers as a bond trader at Cantor Fitzgerald, a job based on the 104th floor of 1 World Trade Center.  The opportunity was what one of his brother-in-laws classified as “his first important job.” He had started in May 2001 and seemed to be on his way to starting a fulfilling career that offered more than a paycheck.

Financial services was a small family business.  He worked with brother-in-law John Swaine, husband of Reo’s sister Suzanne.  The other John helped get him the position. For the time being, they were also housemates.  Reo was living with the couple and their three daughters in a village named Larchmont within Westchester County, which borders the Bronx’s north side. Someone seeking tranquility might choose to work in New York City while returning home to a more relaxed setting with fewer car horns and taverns below dwellings.

But John was on his own and looking for full-time adventure.  The plan was to move across the local border so he didn’t have to do so every day for work.  John had been scheduled to set up life at his own apartment in Manhattan’s East Village that October.   It’s an entirely different kind of village than Larchmont.

The perpetually trendy borough section draws countless visitors and a small fraction of residents who are fortunate enough to find apartments.  It’s a dream of both outsiders and New Yorkers to find such a place for urban adventure, much less be able to swing it.  He was thrilled to have lined up a residence in a vibrant neighborhood of the most exciting city there is.  The home building would have been close to work and countless recreational activities afterward.

There’s more to New York than New York City, as illustrated by John’s migration pattern.  He moved to Westchester County from the Empire State’s Capital District, his birthplace and longtime home.  A Troy native, John graduated from SUNY Albany after spending a year attending Notre Dame. There was no better place to put the economics degree he earned to use than in financial services.

But his bright tomorrows were taken on a historically dark day. John Armand Reo was 28 years old when terrorists murdered him for showing up to his occupation. Our world lost someone with normal, simple, and wonderful interests.  A high school football and lacrosse player liked the Yankees, golfing, and Scrabble. Most importantly, he valued family moments. The youngest of five, John had eight nephews and nieces whom every account notes he found to be a source of unbridled joy.  He took the time to indulge in delightful everyday things so many of us do, or at least should, treasure.

It somehow got worse. The Reo family endured a particularly awful September 11 when so many suffered: aforementioned brother-in-law John was also killed. There are countless ways to frame the atrocity, all of them awful.  The pain his parents endured coping with the death of both a son and son-in-law is as unimaginable as Suzanne losing her husband and brother at once.

John Armand Reo September 11 Memorial 1.jpg

His final resting place is where he worked.  John’s grave is at the National September 11 Memorial, with his name appearing on Panel N-40. As a company which sustained the massacre of 658 employees, Cantor Fitzgerald remains singularly linked with the attacks.  Employees’ names on the memorial are arranged according to friendship and relationship in recognition of the firm’s particular devastation. By request, John Leo and John Swaine are adjacent forever.

John Armand Reo September 11 Memorial with brother-in-law use.jpg

That’s not the only tribute.  Those seeking to remember John can also find monuments in both his native Troy and in Valhalla, a hamlet located in his adopted home county. Track his days by where he’s commemorated.

The only thing better than multiple places in his honor would be to still have him present.  The potential for so much more was destroyed by evil in a matter of minutes.  But John had already succeeded.  He was working at an amazing job with an unparalleled view while supported by beloved relatives.  Anyone would have felt fortunate under such circumstances.

Barbarity naturally leads to focus on loss.  We know much time was taken away he could have savored in Manhattan and with his family.  Instead, seeing John’s years as a blessing means gratefulness for what he achieved.  Living decently is laudable no matter how limited the timespan.  The story ended decades too soon.  But John blossomed in each chapter.  The process of pursuing dreams defines us, and his fulfillment at so many aspects is something he’ll always have realized.


Seeing It All With Ingeborg Lariby


There was one Dutch September 11 victim, and she was one amazing person.  Ingeborg Astrid Desiree Lariby was born in New York City but spent her life as a citizen of the Netherlands due to her parents possessing the same. Regardless of nationality, Ingeborg found comfort worldwide as a woman who defined urbane living.  The effortless traveler moved across borders the way most people cross streets.  Yet a person who lived in 12 countries on five continents didn’t feel at home until she was back in the City That Never Sleeps. Based on her full life, I’m unsure when she was able to sneak in a nap.

Some buildings are vast enough that they require someone to fill it with other companies.  That need led Ingeborg to work as a center manager at the Regus Business Centre Corporation, a company in the World Trade Center that oversaw space within it.  The complex featured unique demands she helped meet.  Every account from coworkers to whom she exuded joy indicates she was radiantly proud of her employment.  That job brought her to on the 93rd floor of Tower 2 on September 11.  Nothing breaks the heart like learning she called her father to say she was okay because it was the other tower that had been attacked.

Regus lost so much: she was one of the company’s five victims. Thanks to Ingeborg, it wasn’t worse: she did her part to ensure clients were safe by refusing to leave until each of them was evacuated.  Without realizing it, she was defining herself in her final moments with absolutely selfless dedication to helping others.

It’s one thing to reside in so many places, but it takes someone truly special to make a lasting positive impression in all of them.  The heroic act of doing her job wouldn’t have surprised anyone who knew her, as companions and coworkers worldwide have offered effusive praise online over the 15 years since.  A friend named Mark Asbury wrote about the fun times they shared in the electric ’80s with her generously sharing comp meals she received while working as a concierge. There’s Rodrigo Idrovo, a classmate at London’s Richmond College who remembered her as someone wonderful you’d feel lucky to have met during studies. And companions from intriguing cities like Vienna chipped in with touching tributes to a person who made others happy in just about any country you can name.

This is one employee who put the “world” in World Trade Center.  Ingeborg lived a cosmopolitan life across the globe in her 42 years. She spoke a roster of languages and relocated between countries with the ease of running an errand like grocery shopping.  Yet only one city could serve as her home.

She was drawn to the city like tourists to Times Square. That doesn’t mean life was without challenges.   Ingeborg wrote about what made her love her final address back six months before her murder in a way that resonates with anyone drawn to a place where the word “bustling” seems inadequate.  “New York is a tormented lover engages you in an emotional roller coaster. One day is full of passion and pounding my heart flutter. The next day is filled with intense hatred,” she wrote for a Dutch magazine.  Ample downsides couldn’t keep her away: “I regularly rehab in a distant exotic place. But like a junkie I can not stay away too long and I look forward to the return trip with anticipation.”  Anyone familiar with where she lived knows the feeling.

The ambiguity regarding New York City is normal.  Someone living in here who isn’t aggravated by it hasn’t been around long enough.  That doesn’t mean residents are going anywhere: anything worthwhile will be accompanied by hassles.  There are no benefits without drawbacks.  What’s important is how Ingeborg didn’t let any of them stop her from living a life that would exhaust many people just thinking about it.

Ingeborg chose such a life despite the endless headaches.  Anyone who’s paid rent in New York City knows how you can hate it one moment and feel energized the next.  She faced it all like a pro and thrived with graceful aplomb.  Feel mad she’s not deftly enjoying the oscillation now while being glad she got to experience it for so long.

You can’t enjoy something spectacular unless you’re willing to cope with irksome circumstances.  Like so many of us who reside in the boroughs, we persevere despite the hassles because they accompany its worthwhile aspects.  The commotion stimulates to the point that residents who choose a teeming borough as home base dismiss the thought of life without the buzz as an option.  For every place she touched, Ingeborg was drawn to where she belonged.


New York City will always be home.  Ingeborg’s final resting place is the National September 11 Memorial, with her name displayed on Panel S-49.  She’ll forever be at peace in a cacophonous city that may as well have been built for her.  Someone who couldn’t get enough of what existence offers is honored in southern Manhattan as the embodiment of those who seek out the city.  If Ingeborg didn’t see the whole planet, she came pretty close.  May her energetic spirit be at rest.


A Smile Provided by Anthony Fallone

Smart Touch TIFF File

What a funny guy.  Everyone who’s mentioned Anthony Fallone notes his affinity for spreading laughs, and it’s nice to be remembered for a universally desired trait.  While not a comedian by trade, Anthony still enjoyed sharing observations on absurdities.  Taking time to bring levity to those in one’s life is even more impressive than doing so professionally.  We’re all thankful to those who set out to make people chuckle without payment other than a pleased response. In Anthony’s case, that meant he had a successful career beyond capably completing his job description.

It sounds like a dream to exchange commercially in the sky.  Anthony lived it as a Cantor Fitzgerald bond broker on the 104th floor at 1 World Trade Center.  Even with a great career in a prime location, he was about more than thriving in business.  The focused worker was also serious about laughs, a hobby that he brought to others using what was then a novel system for sharing information.  The Queens native realized early that email is an effective way to expose people not in the room to one’s thoughts. The technology adapter wisely picked his spots.  Knowing when it’s appropriate to focus on spreading smiles is the key to simultaneously being a smart aleck and accomplished career man.

Being hustle-adjacent is a suitable residential option for busy pros.  Take New Yorkers who settle on that sliver to Manhattan’s right.  Anthony lived on Roosevelt Island, a residential oasis for those most comfortable living alongside the famous neighbor’s cacophony.  A little space from the noise makes it infinitely more bearable. Apartment life is typically relaxed for those in the city who are a tramway, deep subway ride, or circuitous car voyage from more recognizable destinations. Those who have settled on the land surrounded by the East River enjoy the charms of a relative urban oasis.  Visitors can find his name on a plaque there to commemorate someone who knew the value of stepping away from the frenzy found on that more prominent island.

The quest to know more is one we should never let end.  Take the example of a man who was learning when he wasn’t working.  The Hunter College student was attending night school to get the bachelor’s degree in economics he had started in the ’80s.  He gained more than college experience: Anthony met his wife Patricia there in 1984 before a career and caring for children got in the way of college credits.  He was on track to finish in December 2001.  She went on to receive her own degree along with his posthumously. The sheet with one’s name on it in script is the physical representation of dedication to wisdom.

Patricia has the diploma to remember him, which doesn’t ease the difficulties of persevering in his absence.  It’s tough to even think of coping with sudden loss.  Actually doing so is formidable enough personally before helping children do the same.  She knew facing such a brutal reality was crucial after instantly knowing her husband was gone.  Trying to understand that something will never make sense is always going to be a challenge for those enduring death.  The unimaginable can become real quite quickly.  Accepting that harsh reality is the key to moving forward.  Nothing is going replace those lost.  But that knowledge allows us to be thankful for what we had with those no longer at our side.

Anthony J. Fallone, Jr. was murdered at 39 at the hands of terrorists on September 11, 2001.  The engaging storyteller and admired classmate was also a beloved husband and father to four kids.  He was about so much more than a job, although he excelled at that, as well.  As a personal note, I’d like to thank whoever identified him by the nickname of “Tony Doogie” on his memorial page.

His office building’s footprint contains a tangible reminder of the man who worked over 100 stories above.  The thorough New Yorker is listed on panel N-51 of the 9/11 Memorial North Pool. And he’ll be remembered for more than the engraving, although it’s nice to have that on public display.  Like the diploma printed months after his passing, Anthony’s loved ones may encounter sadness upon seeing his name while simultaneously feeling grateful for the reminder of past moments together.  There will be sorrow at the jokes never told.  But remembering the ones he did share will hopefully offer a small respite.  Anthony seemed like he’d want people to revel in punchlines even through grief.  The challenge of doing so is precisely why it’s important.

Dancing With Leonard White

Leonard Anthony White

Leonard Anthony White began living on February 13, 1944 and had over 57 years to make it count. He used that time to achieve an admirable balance that would make a good daily example for anyone fortunate enough to know its details. The pairing of practical ability and artistic devotion is a timeless goal that’s tough to achieve. But finding joy after working professionally in the city he found where he belonged was an earthly dream Leonard made true.

It takes a special kind of selfless personality to hold a job that requires eschewing luxury. Leonard was just the guy. He worked as a technician for Verizon’s Global Communications Division, spending 30 years in their employ. Helping maintain its long distance services control room led to him being stationed on the 110th floor of Two World Trade Center.

A windowless room that served as his workspace deprived him of what would have presumably been a tremendous view. But he had a job to do which would have precluded staring adoringly at his adopted hometown’s skyline. His contributions to functionality helped people connect without them ever knowing who he was. If you have ever been grateful for the ability to instantly phone a loved one or be in touch with a satellite office, thank people like Leonard.

Hard work is most rewarding in a city that’s personally agreeable. One doesn’t have to be born a New Yorker to become one. The man from Virginia resided in Brooklyn in a location decision that reflects an auspicious willingness to chart one’s own course.

The transplant found what he was looking for in the city, particularly in its endless cultural events. Details from Leonard’s life indicate he knew the nobleness of experiencing beauty created by humans. A collector of West African art, Leonard also loved attending Lincoln Center’s ballets and operas. He had himself been a dancer and availed himself of the opportunity to see the world’s best performers sing and pirouette just a subway or taxi ride away.

The desire to take advantage of Gotham’s endless opportunities for aesthetic endeavors is common among those who pursue life within its confines. There is boundless enthusiasm among those who become New Yorkers, as they bring an appreciation of the vibrant world to which they elected to join. They know where they want to finish regardless of where they started.

Anyone who likes the city enough to relocate there must overcome numerous challenges that begin with moving and continue through everyday life. After facing obstacles to a rewarding lifestyle, the boroughs’ newcomers don’t take the unparalleled vitality for granted.

Innate pioneers find themselves forging their own paths even if those close to them are comfortable near their birthplaces. Leonard was one of eight siblings. Seven of the progeny stayed in Richmond. But he was drawn to a city that attracts a certain type of vigorous personality. Leonard lived on his terms, including the discovery that he felt right in a place more than 300 miles from where he was born.

Despite setting off to find personal treasures elsewhere, he remained close to his family. The physical gap didn’t separate him emotionally from relatives who felt cozy in their native state. Paying college tuition for nephews and nieces was a kindly sign that he was supportive of relatives no matter where he was based.

He brings to mind a different White who made his name in New York City, namely the author E.B., who wrote in 1949 about “the New York of the person who was born somewhere else and came to New York in quest of something… Commuters give the city its tidal restlessness; natives give it solidity and continuity; but the settlers give it passion.” A Virginia native found much to love in a ceaselessly bustling city which he chose to dwell.

Leonard was one of 11 people with the surname White who was murdered during the September 11 atrocities.  He lost his life at age 57 having thrived in the city he adored yet with so many future opportunities for joy and fulfillment taken away. We must remember to feel blessed that he achieved so much to emulate and use it to be inspired during our time here. With Leonard in mind, patronize an artist you enjoy in any medium today.

The White family has kept the departed’s memory alive. They visited the World Trade Center site in 2012, seeing where his name is preserved and his final resting place. His name will always be listed in the town he made his own.

Leonard allowed the world to communicate through his technical proficiency and embraced the arts that make life beautiful. By finding what sparked him, Leonard is an inspiration to not just New Yorkers or Americans but everyone. The quest to relish creativity in a place that brings contentment will always continue.

Yelena Belilovsky’s American Life

Yelena Belilovsky lived as an American by choice. She excelled in New York after being born in what is now Ukraine and what was then part of a nation repressed by a system renowned for provoking enervation. By always looking to better herself, she set the perfect example for dedicating life to personal progress.

Born in Kiev in 1963 to a Jewish doctor and engineer, Yelena was excellent student who was awarded the Gold Medal, the USSR’s top academic award. Working hard to learn became a recurring motif in her life.

But recognizing young scholars was one of the nation’s few indications of progress. Yelena also lived through the Soviet Union’s ceaseless obstacles. The system’s fundamental backwardness was embodied by a nuclear catastrophe that coincided with her personal joyous union: April 26, 1986 was the day when she celebrated her wedding with her husband Boris as Chernobyl melted 40 miles away. She didn’t let the specific disaster and general infirmity affect her application of aptitude, as she got a Masters in engineering the next year from National Technical University of Ukraine.

Still, her homeland proved stifling even while transitioning after falling apart. Yelena sought to escape remnants anti-Semitism and a lack of opportunity that continued to plague the new nation after the Soviet Union’s dissolution. Thankfully, there was America. Every relocation across borders presents challenges, but the cost of staying became prohibitive. She arrived in the US in 1993 and found she was an adroit partner with a nation that welcomes those motivated to prosper.

The new American began her professional life in the New York City region as a librarian at the Larchmont Public Library in Westchester County. But she was merely getting started. The same drive that led her to immigrate spurred her to continue ascending. For one, why settle for one diploma? Yelena earned another post-bachelor’s degree, this time a Master of Library Sciences from Pratt University in Brooklyn. Even more impressive was how she obtained it, namely while taking two buses in an effort to save money via a brutally long commute to and from the borough.

After again excelling at school, she once more turned what she had learned into further career success. Having moved on to a photo library where she introduced digital cataloging methods, Yelena was then hired at Fred Alger Management as a researcher before being promoted in 1999 to assistant vice president for information. She had next been planning to become a financial analyst for the company. Before that, she continued the theme of reinvention via changing what she was called, going by the name Helen at work as the Americanized equivalent in another sign she was adjusting well in her adopted home.

Yelena lived the sort of accomplishment-laden life that would seem too inspirational for a television show’s premise. America has always been welcoming to those who apply to be part of the dream, and someone who endured the limits put on life by the drearily brutal Soviet system definitely seemed to appreciate what she hadn’t had before. An immigrant who had at first struggled learning English ended up working for a prestigious firm above Manhattan while staying grounded with her husband and then-teenaged son, Eugene, in Mamaroneck a bit north of the big city.

Her final homeland provided chances that she gladly maximized. Given her adoration for the mutually beneficial relationship, she became such an evangelist for America that she persuaded her parents Leonid and Emma Tisnovsky and brother Ross to emigrate as she had. Yelena had also celebrated her son’s bar mitzvah in fall 2001; he is now a Cornell graduate.

Yelena was murdered at age 38 on September 11, 2001 after she went to work on the 93rd floor of One World Trade Center. The first plane used in the attack hit very close to her office at 8:46 a.m., 16 minutes after her workday’s start. She was one of 35 killed from a company with 39 employees, unimaginable devastation for a firm that had not long before moved from a small office on nearby Maiden Lane. She had just joined her company literally taking its place among the clouds.

Her final resting place is in Valhalla, New York’s Sharon Gardens Cemetery after her remains were recovered at the World Trade Center site. Also located in Westchester County, Yelena’s grave lies within a town named for the paradisiacal afterworld inhabited by slain heroes. Meanwhile, her continuous gift to those remaining behind is the inspiration she offers to anyone desiring to excel as a matter of applied personality.

Someone born in the Soviet Union who chose to be an American took every opportunity life presented and created her own as well. Yelena’s death will never affect how she moved ever upward.


Fracking only seems miraculous. But it’s no more an inexplicable instance of material joyousness than Rearden Steel was in that semi-fictional Ayn Rand novel. Clever drilling is not a divine occurrence but rather a gift to society developed by crafty humans who figured an ingenious way to obtain the energy underfoot. Pressurized specialists juice our lives with a bit of drilling, and they’re naturally condemned for it by people who assume the refrigerator light will always turn on.

It’s no coincidence that magic outlet believers think they’ll win by fighting for wasted potential. There’s nothing kinetic about their unprincipled opposition, as they’re heading forward by hitting the brakes.

Those who don’t get why we need to take all these risks to get rewards continually refuse to accept any disruption to Mother Gaia’s serenity, as we’ll finally be respecting the planet when we decide to go nowhere. Next, digging a hole in which to live will be deemed disrespectful to the planet. Just sleep on top. Lightly.

You didn’t want to work all day, did you? Even if you inexplicably sought toil, there’s no hope provided by people who think the best way to score touchdowns is to start by having six points. Backward liberals have still not learned despite brutally frequent examples that jobs aren’t created by the government: they’re the effect of human interaction and output.

Employment is created as a result of having something worthwhile to do. We don’t just enjoy the fruits provided by the energy acquisition jobs themselves, although those are nice. More importantly, they literally fuel everything else accomplished in civilization.

It should be tough to live with oneself after whining about buying oil from the Middle East while standing against maximizing our keg-tapping, but that doesn’t stop our sanctimonious resource theorists. But there’s sure to be tension relief once Assad asks for our help in drafting a Constitution.

And of course we can’t import relatively clean oil from our honorably clean hoser buddies in Canada, so they will instead just ship it across an ocean to the utterly upstanding Chinese. A third tube to run alongside the maple syrup and Labatt ones would stimulate both America and its attic, but why would we seek to turn neighbors into friends?

Next, electricity fairies will insist we can only search for electricity generated on America’s skin. Wait for windmills to spin or clouds to dissipate, and learn to appreciate the quiet darkness until then.

The kooky theory is settled. Purportedly pro-science liberals shriek about costs like flammable tap water and fracking-caused earthquakes, which are nasty crackpot theories along the lines of thinking jet fuel can’t melt steel. We can’t refer to the conspirers as frackers because that term is reserved for actual useful people recovering natural resources.

Some would rather burn a winning lottery ticket for warmth. Take New York State, which is particularly dedicated to discarding luck. Governor Andrew Cuomo has taken time from restricting gun rights, redefining marriage, and making abortions easier to obtain than cold pills to not let people access the gold mine equivalent underfoot.

It’s not like the de facto former Empire State needs jobs or anything, as Upstate New York is at least three or four years from looking like it was annexed by Detroit. Real jobs which actually trickle down instead of subtracting from the economy are too reminiscent of evil flowing oil.

Pristine land fetishists refuse to see how the superb benefits outweigh the disruption. The unwillingness to accept Thomas Sowell’s sobering yet overwhelmingly wise advice that there are only tradeoffs and not solutions leads to shirking anything that requires weighing choices.

Fantasyland residents only see the risks because they assume there’s a magical pathway cloaked by corporations that would permit euphoria without consequences. To them, there’s nothing worth doing if the activity in question presents even manageable challenges. What could keep the light switch from working?

Why can’t we just have joyous results without any of that messy acquisition? Regulations that function as punishment for error and not an inhibition on efficiency aren’t stringent enough for those who expect the breeze to keep their cushy lives fully juiced. Neo-retro-Luddites presumably want more outages so they don’t look like full-time hypocrites for reaping society’s benefits while moaning about them.

It should go without saying, but we must apparently announce the need to bring the power source to the surface if we want things like modernity. All this amazing drilling prompts progressives to tweet condemnations of excessive power usage from fully-charged iPads.

The ability to retrieve everything that enables our amazing life is right there. Or maybe we could keep hoping the world’s sand trap turns serene enough to keep buying liquid tinder from particularly zealous psychopaths. Refusing to make use of the fuel at hand is exactly what bullying oil sultans want.

Cross-posted at

Sparkle On

Maintaining the sparklers ban would reaffirm New York’s status as the nation’s wussiest state. It’s typical that a jurisdiction with a notoriously high percentage of Schumer-hugging pinkos would not be interested in sufficiently celebrating freedom. Real patriots seek to commemorate America’s birthday by creating craters in it. Texas would give us a wedgie.

Forget Roman candles and ladyfingers: Empire State residents still can’t legally light the most effeminate form of fireworks imaginable. Buy ash snakes now before they’re illicit, too. Two control freaks argue about just how little fun you should be able to have within a bailiwick of a country that was once dedicated to establishing your own level of acceptable risk and living however the hell you please:

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is pressuring Gov. Andrew Cuomo to put a stop to a state lawmaker’s move to legalize the sale of sparklers outside city limits.

One could say they bring up legitimate concerns that something innocent could be used in for nefarious purposes. Or one could more accurately say that they should give us a damn break. It’s egregious to use terrorism as an excuse to control people who want to have the mildest form of summer fun conceivable. But terrorists could ruin our amusing sparkly time, which is why we must also eliminate flint stockpiles:

Terrorists could use the sparklers — one of the few Fourth of July fireworks products that are believed safe for use by children — to ignite a bomb, City Hall officials suggested, The New York Post reported.

Terrorists are ready to attack us; they are just waiting for sparklers to be legalized. The state might end the full restriction on an ignited stick that a supervised kindergartener can hold, and Benito Bloomberg thinks that’s too much liberty:

Lawmakers passed a bill last week that would allow sparklers to be sold in certain areas of the state, excluding the five boroughs within the Big Apple under Mr. Bloomberg’s jurisdiction where they’re already banned, The Post reported. But Mr. Bloomberg isn’t happy with the bill and wants Mr. Cuomo to veto it.

“While this bill excludes New York City, legalizing these devices everywhere else in the state would, as a practical matter, have the same effect in the five boroughs,” said the mayor’s state legislative director, Joseph Garba, in The Post. “A recent attempt to harm innocent lives provides a frightening example of how legally purchased … fireworks can cause dramatic harm and even kill.”

Count on a Bloomberg flunky to be not at all shamelessly histrionic. Idiots can harm themselves, so nobody can have a blast. The joyless totalitarian uses the same excuse he does for demanding more gun control, namely that outsiders use dangerous implements from places with laxer laws. As to why same more salvo-tolerant states don’t have massive problems with the smallest-scale explosives being used in planned attacks, shut up.

Puritan progressives think legal fireworks and not the evil-minded are our scourge. But they should hate that notorious health care critic who turned to a career as a bomber because he was upset at the law or something:

He referred to the failed 2010 bombing attempt at Times Square, when Faisal Shahzad legally purchased an M-88 out of state and then tried to use it to ignite his bomb.

“Shahzad purchased fireworks at a Pennsylvania chain store, transported the fireworks to Connecticut and created a bomb-like device that he transported into New York City with the intent of killing and causing havoc in a busy tourist area,” Mr. Gerba said, The Post reported.

Or, he could have bought ingredients at a Duane Reade to make a bomb based on easily-available instructions. That’s unless there are no Anarchist Cookbook-type sites on the web. If there are, just shutter the internet.

In the meantime, human demons willing to murder as many innocents as possible are not going to be stopped by having some shopping list items banished from legal acquisition. Not to scare everyone, but our enemies can already acquire fireworks and would be able to do so even if they were illegal in every state. So, focus on stopping bad people, not their tools. Besides, you could still only buy puny diversions during two small sales windows:

The bill weaving through New York’s legislature would only legalize the sale of sparklers and toy caps, from June 1 to July 5 and from Dec. 26 to Jan. 2, The Post reported.

You can’t get fricking caps, either? The official state singing voice is castrato. But safety trumps all, which is why we must ban lighters on account of how they can ignite fuses. Next, we’ll outlaw pens, as they could be used to write instructions for terror attacks. Such an interdiction is as reasonable as rendering toy guns with the capability to generate a fun pop and smoke burst with a trigger pull lame.

It’s un-American to not be able to ignite things that provide a pleasing flash and bang. That’s different from something being un-New Yorkian, as the onerously prohibitory state will take away any physical item that could conceivably ever cause harm. But there’s nothing more dangerous than politicians taking away options with lame justifications about protecting your wretched hide.

Meanwhile, good luck finding a portion of New York State which on July 4 doesn’t resemble downtown Damascus. Whether I’ve been living in the suburbs or ultra-urban areas, I’ve spent every July 4th in this state ducking with ears covered. Legal fireworks could be monitored, but we instead must cope with a lawless imitation of conflict. Word of the prohibition apparently gets drowned out every year by a cacophony of bottle rockets.

If politicians think they’re serving as guardians by keeping every flame-shooting novelty down to sparklers banned, they’re as oppressive as they are incompetent. The opportunity to celebrate the Declaration of Independence by being rebellious doesn’t justify the comically irritating hassle.

Cross-posted at Conservative Commune.