Life

15 Of The Wildest Theories About Why So Many Fireworks Are Going Off Right Now

Anadolu Agency/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

OK, whoever had “firework conspiracy theories” on their 2020 bingo card wins. Congrats and also how dare you. If you live... um, literally anywhere close to a major city, you’ve likely heard mysterious nightly fireworks. It’s still a bit too soon for Fourth of July-specific explosions and, if you’ve been paying attention at all, the world isn’t really cause for celebration at the moment. So, why the fireworks display every night? The internet, as you might suspect, has some theories.

Make no mistake: you have been hearing way more fireworks than usual. Boston has seen a 2,300% increase in firework complaints since this time last year. Not to be outdone, New York has seen a 4,000% increase in firework complaints. Subreddits for major cities across the country — from Chicago to Philadelphia to San Francisco to Los Angeles to Hartford, Connecticut to Columbus, Ohio — are all asking the same question: why are fireworks going off every night?

Many people are attributing it to quarantine boredom. After being cooped up inside, mostly isolated, we’ve all developed some form of cabin fever. Some of us have turned to sourdough starters. Others, apparently, turn to pyrotechnics. Though we have no conclusive answers on the 2020 Fireworks Mystery, might as well speculate a bit. Here are 15 of the most buckwild theories Twitter has about the nightly fireworks.

1
It's The Police

The theory doesn't seem as far fetched when you consider the parade of police sirens seen West Harlem and reports of fireworks being set off near police precincts in other cities. While places like New York say their police department is planning a "sting operation" to stop the fireworks, theories that the police are behind it to begin with don't seem to be slowing down.

2
Fireworks Are Just Super Cheap Right Now

Tri-state area fireworks retailer Keystone is currently running a buy one, get one sale until July 10. However, some of their bigger fireworks like the Mr. Sandman are still priced at $100, which seems steep for regular consumption given the number of fireworks being reported.

3
The Cancelled 4th Of July Fireworks Have To Go Somewhere

Some speculate that the fireworks were purchased pre-coronavirus in anticipation for summer celebration. Now, with larger gatherings off the table, those giant fireworks displays have to go somewhere.

4
What If It's *lowers glasses* The Government?

This seems to be the most popular theory in part because it's so vague it explains away any questions. Why every night at the same time? The government. Why isn't it stopping? The government. Why is it happening everywhere? The government. I will say, author Robert Jones Jr.'s government theory is compelling.

5
Maybe It's Something More...Insidious

Are these fireworks and their mysterious disappearing debris the new crop circles? (Probably not as some cities have been asking residents to help clean up the firework detritus.)

6
Maybe We're Just Noticing Them More

Though there's been a measurable increase in fireworks sales, some say the fireworks they just seem louder after pandemic quietness. Like the Baader-Meinhof phenomenon but with firework explosions.

7
It's Black Market Sales

Tied into the fireworks sales and cancellation of 4th of July celebrations, another theory is that we have easier access to "professional grade" fireworks. But whether or not they're actually the "professional grade" fireworks typically inaccessible by the public is up for debate.

8
We're Being Baited

Reports of people just stumbling upon fireworks or being handed them sans explanation are also scattered throughout the internet. As you might expect, this is a hard theory to prove or disprove as it's mostly reliant on word-of-mouth.

9
It's Probably Political

Across the political spectrum, people think it's some sore of political conspiracy. Of course, which political party is doing the conspiring depends on who you ask.

10
OK, But Have You Googled COINTELPRO?

I mean, it's not entirely unheard of though claims that the fireworks are nefarious is still purely speculation,

11
It's The Illuminati

When it doubt, just say it's the illuminati.

12
It's Citizen Rebellion

Some have suggested the fireworks are somehow tied into the protests against police brutality and growing anti-racism movement a la the car horns at Gracie Mansion.

13
At This Point, It's A Game

It's simple: people are setting off fireworks to make a point to the people who are setting off fireworks to make a point to the people who are setting off fireworks to make a point to...

14
Are Pita Chips Involved???

Are the pita chips meant to distract from the fireworks? Are the fireworks meant to distract from the pita chips?!?

15
The Answer We Can All Agree On

Dibs on being personally responsible for never having to hear a firecracker ever again.