How Fireworks Divide California

The State’s Regulations on a July Fourth Tradition Don’t Always Make Sense. But They’re Part of What Makes This Country Great.

If you venture out to Fourth of July weekend events around California, you’ll probably hear high talk about how Independence Day is a celebration of the things we Americans supposedly have in common: the same rights and freedoms and equality under the same laws.

Yeah, right—and I’m Thomas Jefferson.

If you want to know what the Fourth—and this nutty country—are really all about, head to the intersection of Huntington Drive and Alhambra Road in Southern California’s San Gabriel Valley. There, at the southeast corner, in front of Cheney’s Tropic Liquor …