The Toronto Sun newspapers had an opinion piece recently about Ontario, and how the government is trying to “protect us” (they called it a Nanny State). At one point, it uses Niagara Falls as an example:
These days, the architects of our bubble-wrapped, peanut-free society have their sights set on the daredevil community.
The nattering nabobs of nannyism at the Niagara Parks Commission won’t give permission to highwire walker Ken Wallenda to walk a tightrope across the Falls. Wallenda wants to start in Niagara Falls, N.Y., enter the mist, and re-emerge on the Canadian side. Fantastic!
Stateside, politicians who want to help the economically depressed city of Niagara Falls, N.Y. have championed Wallenda’s proposal, and lawmakers in Albany have approved the stunt.
But a snag has been encountered in — where else? — Nanny State Central. You see, Wallenda’s stunt isn’t being embraced by the testicular-challenged bureaucrats at the Niagara Parks Commission. Officials are frowning on what they deem to be a Falls folly.
Apparently, “risky business” in Niagara Falls, Ont. these days is confined to the rubes doubling down at the government-run blackjack tables.
When Wallenda first proposed the stunt, the Commission’s Janice Thomson remarked: “Doing something for one day doesn’t seem like sustainable tourism. It harkens back to those early days when Niagara Falls was a carnival-like atmosphere. We have come so far away from that.”
Egad! Has Thomson ever strolled up Clifton Hill, home to House of Frankenstein, Castle Dracula, and numerous other wax museums and freak shows?
Niagara Falls isn’t exactly Vienna on the Rhine. Actually, it can be cheesier than a bucket of Bulgarian feta.
Isn’t it disheartening that in our increasingly sissified culture the safety mavens are now turning their sights on daredevils?
So much for Dalton McGuinty’s oft-repeated boast that Ontario is “open for business” — Wallenda’s stunt stands, or stood, to rake-in millions for the region.
But that’s sanitized-for-your-protection Ontario — a province that wants bread, not circuses.