By far, the most often viewed Rant has been Caveat Lectores on Firefighter Values from March 2010. It is the #1 keyword used to find us on Google. I find that interesting and have not a clue why that term comes up so often in word searches.
Firefighters and all public employees are taking a whipping these days. They are frequently portrayed as lazy, overpaid underachievers who feed at the public trough to the detriment of the tax payer. Yet, they continue to answer the calls for help without question as to why. It is what they do even when the news media and too many right wing sycophant politicians threaten to destroy their future.
Firefighter values are what make them get on the truck in the middle of a snow storm or in a freezing rain to try to get somebody out of trouble usually caused by the one who needs the help.
Firefighter values are what cause them to work a code on a heart attack victim until exhaustion makes them collapse only to be replaced by another.
Firefighter values are why they enter a building with intense heat, smoke and flames around them looking for someone’s child.
Firefighter values are why they work through the tears when that child dies in their arms.
Firefighter values are the real reason why they do not go on strike when the public and the politicians spit in their eyes and call them unworthy of respect or a decent living.
A paycheck is what allows them to live while they follow their firefighter values. Few will do what a firefighter does just because of the money.
The current attempts by the right wing nut jobs to vilify public employees are a shameful effort by those without enough heart and soul to do the jobs they will not do themselves. There is a reason why they call public employees “civil servants.”
Don’t get me wrong, firefighters are not the only worthy servants of the public. All public employees deserve to be able to go to work without being persecuted. I was once a firefighter and am now a public university teacher, labor lawyer and consultant. One day I will admit to being a senior citizen who would like to have something remind me of my years of service than a kick in the teeth. There was never a day I was not proud to be a firefighter.
I willingly gave up my fire service career and pension to do something else I wanted to do. They are trying to take your pension and employment rights away from you.
There is a difference. Do not let them do it.
Know your enemies. Make them pay every day, in every way. Make some noise.
And oh yes, have a nice Day?
Caveat Lectores by Jeff Carnes
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