A kingdom must fall: City forced to remove popular playground to ensure children’s safety

A kingdom must fall: City forced to remove popular playground to ensure children’s safety

The city of Rowlett is preparing to tear down one of its more popular playgrounds in order to ensure the safety of the children who have enjoyed the structure. The city will remove the Kids Kingdom Playground from Pecan Grove Park after an independent safety inspection deemed it unsafe for use and recommended its replacement. SOURCE

This is one of those stories that you’re going to have to read. I sat through the Council work session and after doing so, I personally, after hearing ALL of the facts concerning the reasons why, have NO problem with the destruction of Kids Kingdom because of the CCA
(chromated copper arsenic) content.

Regarding the over-all *safety issue* for the little tykes; the City of Rowlett can’t make ANY project 100% *safe*, it is an impossibility to do so.

The thing that concerns me most is this; I have talked to some folks on the Parks and Recreation board and THEY knew nothing, had been told nothing up until this issue surfaced in the last week or so. I have been told that inspections were done and NO violations were noted or reported TO the folks at Parks and Recreation or the Rowlett City Council.

I know that Rowlett Citizens were NOT made aware of this until a couple of days before the Council meeting on June 4th.

Any of the Council members can correct me if I am wrong but it’s MY understanding that this was dropped like a BOMB into their laps as well.

I also realize that City Attorney David Berman had to state ALL the facts, possibilities and ramifications, that is his job, but we can’t *nanny state* the safety of our kids.

I don’t know how MY generation survived, I am one of the baby boomers, born between 1946 and 1964. I sometimes wonder how we survived. Consider:

Our mothers smoked and/or drank while pregnant.

They took aspirin, ate blue cheese dressing, tuna from a can and didn’t get tested for diabetes.

Then after that trauma, we were put to sleep on our tummies in baby cribs covered with brightly colored, lead-based paints.

There were no childproof lids on medicine or special locks on cabinet doors.

We rode bikes, we wore baseball caps, not specially engineered helmets.

As infants, we rode in cars without car seats or booster seats, no seat belts and no air bags. Sometimes, as tots, we rode in small moving boxes packed with blankets and toys.

We rode in the back of pickup trucks and no one was arrested or cited.

We drank water from garden hoses, not from plastic bottles.

We shared a single bottle of Coca-Cola with three friends — and no one died.

We ate cupcakes with food coloring, white bread, real butter and bacon. In fact, we drank Kool-Aid mixed with tablespoons of real sugar.

Yet we weren’t overweight, because we were always outside playing.

We would leave home in the morning and play all day, as long as we were back when dusk fell. And no one was able to reach us all day. And: we were okay.

We’d spend hours in the forest with Daisy rifles, or building go-carts without brakes, or sledding with wooden and steel monstrosities that could sever a limb.

We did not have Play Stations, Nintendo’s and X-Boxes. There were no video games, no cable television, no DVD players. There were no computers, no web, no Facebook, no Twitter.

We had friends and we went outside and found them …without cell phones or text messages.

We fell out of trees, got cut, broke bones and teeth and there were no lawsuits resulting from these accidents. We ate worms and mud pies made from dirt, and the worms did not live in us forever.

We were given BB guns and knives for our birthdays, made up games with sticks and tennis balls, played lawn darts and, although we were told it would happen, we did not put out many eyes.

We rode bikes or walked to a friend’s house and knocked on the door or rang the bell, or just walked in and talked to them.

Little League had tryouts and not everyone made the team. Those who didn’t had to learn to deal with disappointment.

The boomers have produced some of the best risk-takers, problem solvers, inventors and entrepreneurs ever.

The last 50 years have seen an explosion of innovation and new ideas.

We had freedom, failure, success and responsibility, and we learned how to deal with it all.

We had the good fortune to grow up as kids in America, before the government regulated so much of our lives “for our own good”.

These kids today, they’ll survive too, in spite of the *nanny state* they now live in…

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8 Responses to A kingdom must fall: City forced to remove popular playground to ensure children’s safety

  1. Capt Ron says:

    That’s right, Fred. If there is a problem with the wood in the playground structure I don’t have a problem with replacing it. It is strange timing how it came up. Seems also there is no danger unless kids eat the wood. Lots of it. I myself didn’t raise termites. The arsenic may have been an additive to prevent bugs from eating and residing in it, and I’m not Euell Gibbons.

    We grew up with BB guns, occasionally someone got shot but it was rare because we were very careful, knowing the effects of BB’s on flesh and buttstocks on butts if there were problems. We played in the woods, got poison ivy to learn to stay away from it; we built forts and such without OSHA, modified bikes in various ways just because, and other things. Mainly, we explored options and ideas, learned what worked and what didn’t, and usually had a male role model to give us some guidance and chew our ass when we needed it. We weren’t babied.

  2. Bunkerville says:

    It is amazing we survived childhood. I remember taking lunch to school in a paper bag with a sandwich complete with mayonnaise. I guess our generation was made of the right stuff.

  3. Michael Gallops says:

    For those wishing to retrieve a fence picket you paid for when the park was being built, here is the process.

    1. A form is being created and will be available sometime early next week on the City website and in person at City Hall in the City Secretary’s Office. Since the fence pickets were made from the same material as the playground, it is also treated with CCA. Therefore, each person will need to sign an acknowledgment. The form will also provide a place for the name on the picket. This will allow the City to track who received the picket, since people who were married in 1998 may now be divorced and both parties want it. The City needs to know who got it in the event multiple people make requests. Each request will be treated on a first come-first serve basis.

    2. Anybody wanting their picket will need to contact the City Secretary’s Office. The form can be sent to them electronically once it is created and approved by the City Attorney or they can complete it in person at City Hall.

    3. Starting June 17th, the picket will be made available the next afternoon upon request. The City Secretary’s Office will provide a list of names to Parks Staff at the close of each day. Parks staff will pull the pickets the following morning and provide them to the City Secretary’s Office for pick-up by the following afternoon.

    4. Again, fence pickets will become available starting June 17th. Parks staff will start taking the fence apart next week and sorting it for easy return.

    5. Information will be provided on the City website and information will be sent to the community through the normal distribution channels.

  4. Hgpsurf says:

    We also had lead in both gas and paint and crimped lead sinkers with our teeth.

  5. cary says:

    My God, according to the OSHA and KidSafe sites, I should have died. Let’s see – once when I was three, four times during my fourth year, when I was five there should have been a funeral every other month, at six I would have been considered a superfund site, three more times at seven, only once at eight, nine should have been a banner year for the undertaker …

  6. JP says:

    Regardless of whether it needed to be done or not, the way it was handled reeked of Washington liberal tactics… middle of the night push it through, bring out their biggest weapon – “it’s for the children” and “it’s for your own good”. They were bulldozing it down before the citizens were getting out of bed the next morning. Ram through an agenda before anybody knows about it!
    We, the citizens have been playing on this for 10 years since this substance has been banned but the end of the world is coming if they wait another week to tear it down. I know we are to believe that if someone ignores the “do not enter” fence around the playground and ignores the “park closed” and the former “play at your own risk” sign (the one that keeps people from being able to sue the city over playgrounds if they choose to use them) then in a matter of minutes the city is SURE to be sued and somehow LOSE the lawsuit. By the way, if your house wasn’t built in the last year then it’s out of code. If you do an inspection on all the houses in Rowlett then you are sure to find out that 95% of them are a fire hazard among other violations, and they are almost all now safety hazards for children. Go figure. We eat more arsenic in our food than we could get from this playground (unless you eat the wood daily). Now we get to spend $200,00 from our local economy to replace it. I don’t know the answers and maybe it needed to be torn down – quite frankly no one was given time to think about it and have any input whatsoever. I suppose it’s because we are all too dumbed down from all the brain damage from the arsenic, tuna, bleu cheese, bike accidents, tree falls, worms and mud pies that we had all our lives to be able to consciously research and offer any intelligent input.

    • TexasFred says:

      Regardless of whether it needed to be done or not, the way it was handled reeked of Washington liberal tactics… middle of the night push it through, bring out their biggest weapon – “it’s for the children” and “it’s for your own good”.

      That is a thought shared by many I believe…

      But in ALL fairness to the Mayor and City Council, they had this dropped in their laps on very short notice, all they had to go on was the report itself and the recommendations of City Attorney David Berman and City Manager Lynda Humble…

      Given the information at hand the Council did approve tearing it down and you are correct, the demolition was already scheduled BEFORE the Council meeting on June 4th. I also know that there were, and still are some folks on the Council that saw it the same way you do, they feel like they were *back-doored*…

      JP, I think we are basically in agreement here, and thank you for your comment!

  7. himself9 says:

    Isn’t it amazing how the world went on without the PC crap. I was born in the ’30′s & in addition of all the great times you reminded me that I had.

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