Special Feature

A New Year Celebration Postscript

If there’s one thing to know about New Year celebrations in Metropolitan Manila, it’s that the city goes all out. No matter where you are in the metropolis, there’s no missing the bright and grand fireworks to greet the new year. And as the video below shows, the whole city just goes bonkers in the celebration.

And that video, taken from Gramercy Residences in Century City, made its way to popular news website Mashable, which boldly proclaimed that Manila’s fireworks wins over the New Year fireworks in New York City.

On one hand, I suppose we can be proud that the city has earned such a “distinction” and that it show the festive character of our people.

New Year’s Eve at the Quezon Memorial Circle (courtesy of Haaretz)

On the other hand, one can imagine how much smog and pollution these fireworks bring in the city atmosphere, which is bad especially if you suffer from asthma.

There is also the stress the loud and crackling sound of fireworks bring upon some animals, especially on the pets who may be annoyed or worse, frightened by them that it causes a problem not only for them but for the human owners as well.

Let’s not even forget the yearly incidences of injuries and missing body parts among some revelers due to their handling (or mishandling) fireworks, worse if those fireworks are illegal.

In contrast, at least one city in the country, Davao City in southern Philippines, has celebrated New Year and even the Chinese New Year and other festivities without fireworks as the city passed an ordinance way back in 2001 banning fireworks from being sold or blown in the city.

While that point is not meant to push for a similar ban to be implemented, it does not hurt if we should exercise more care and restraint the next time we want to make a huge celebration not only for ourselves but also of others, even the animals, as well as our environment.

Here’s to a blessed and joyful 2015 for all of us!

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