I have an early memory — probably from about age four or five — of Fourth of July fireworks. We had gone to see the big fireworks show and I was in bed trying to go to sleep. Back then, however, firecrackers and bottle rockets were completely legal and larger explosives were not uncommon. To a young child, however, the noise was terrifying — I knew for sure that one of those fireworks I was hearing was going to land on our roof and burn the house down with all of us in it. And perhaps that’s why I’m an ultra-liberal these days. Yes, before you head out to that Fourth of July parade or fire up the Independence Day barbecue, you might want to take a look at what a new study has to say about the lasting effects of such festivities.