Here’s Something To Be Mad About

For all of you who scream insanely when a firefighter is missing his gloves on a Dave Statter video, why don't you get mad about this?  This is a paragraph from an AP article featured on FirefighterNation.com.

"Despite the lives at stake, the recommendation to improve radio interoperability for first responders has stalled because of a political fight over whether to allocate 10 MHz of radio spectrum … directly to public safety for a nationwide network, or auction it off to a commercial wireless bidder who would then be required to provide priority access on its network dedicated to public safety during emergencies," says the report, whose authors include 9/11 Commission chairmen Lee Hamilton and Thomas Kean.

I distinctly recall the shouts of support from the American public for firefighters everywhere after the Towers fell, and how shocked people were when we let them know that one of our biggest problems is communications interoperability.  Then, in 2005, when Katrina blew through, the politicians were adamant that we needed the tools to combat this problem of communications interoperability.  And here we are, in 2011 and the politicians still will tell us one thing and do another.

Congress seems to find the time and support to help out their fat cat buddies when times are tough. Banks and corporations get bailed out and corporate big-wigs continue to get record bonuses.  In the meanwhile, public servants I work with get lacerated over getting a miniscule pay raises over the last three years, like these firefighters, cops, EMTs, teachers, and city administrators are sitting at home, counting the dough in their offshore accounts and laughing maniacally.  Really? And many other people, not just our brothers, are losing benefits, taking furloughs, or worse, losing their jobs altogether.  

It makes me sick when I see our politicians sucking up to the ones who shout the loudest on the right or the left while forgetting there are many more of us out here in the middle who are just trying to get by.  These are the same individuals with the nerve to take government pensions, government health care, and government paychecks, the whole while saying "government is bloated".

This proposal was meant to make our job safer, to improve our ability to save lives, and to combat disaster in our communities, but instead, our politicians want to continue to discuss the possibility of awarding the block to a commercial wireless company who, of course, stands to make billions off our first responders and probably still give us communications that suck.

If you really want to get mad about something, find a battle worth fighting over.  I'm throwing you the ball now, you are supposed to swing at it.  Here's one: Call your representatives today and tell them what you think of their continued stalling and their greedy tactics.  We need support.  This would be the support the politiicans continually promise us when the news cameras are on them and they're hawking their platform on the graves of firefighters, cops and EMTs.  It's the same support, of course, that is quickly forgotten when the lobbyists show up and when the big money is up for grabs.  

If you don't know who represents you, try this link: ContactingtheCongress.org.  It makes it easy for you; there are phone numbers and comment links.  Put your money where your mouth is.  Or better yet, get some balls and tell your representatives what you think.  Your representatives are supposed to be representing you.  Instead of taking a few minutes away from your valuable Facebook time posting an anonymous rant against a brother who had a lapse in judgement caught on video, try venting against the real enemies: the political hacks who tell you they support you but can't work together to fund necessary things like fire departments, fire education, and firefighters.  Here's a message you can send them: If they want that photo op with dirt on their face, shovel in hand, and helmet on their head, tell 'em they have to earn it first.  Support the brotherhood.  FTM.

  • Larry

    UHHHHH, what is your point other than rambling on. Do you have a specific bill number for people to call or email on. With the information you just gave someone will call their rep and give vauge details on some firefighters bill on the 10 MHZ of radio spectrum.  This will hurt us more than help. We need people that can give a detailed argument not just cry with passion.

    • http://www.firehousezen.com Michael “Mick” Mayers

      Larry, I amended this reply from earlier, because I reconsidered and found my reply to be a little immature. I’m not rambling on, because I mistakenly assumed most first responders knew what I was talking about. Try this link: http://www.cfsi.org/news/exec_direc_blog.cfm?pr_ID=92

      There are references to the bills as well as information on exactly what the issues are. But furthermore, you are absolutely right. What was my point other than to be emotional about the subject myself? My point is that while we should keep the emotion out of things, for the most part, that if you are going to get emotional about something, be emotional about a subject that has great consequences if it isn’t done right.

      You are also right that a bunch of ill-informed individuals blathering on pointlessly about something they can’t speak intelligently about could be counterproductive. You have an excellent point.

      The difference between Firehouse Zen and other sites is that we encourage intelligent discourse here. And if I am wrong, I will admit it. And I was wrong for acting the way I did.

      • http://www.firehousezen.com Michael “Mick” Mayers

        And anyone who wants even more information should check out the links from my buddy Dave. Excellent add to the discussion, Dave! Thanks a lot-

        Mick

  • http://www.statter911.com Dave Statter

    And Chief Mick it is very funny you should use the phrase you did because here are two Dave Statter videos on just this issue. One directed to the fire service and one directed to the folks making the decisions.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a2qc4lT4-Zs
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=seN5gWmBsTA
     

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Michael "Mick" Mayers

Deputy Fire Chief - Operations Division for Hilton Head Island (SC) Fire Rescue and an Emergency Response Coordinator with the United States Department of Health and Human Services  National Disaster Medical System Incident Response Coordination Team.
Recent Posts
Comments
Colin Fanning
The Roto-Ray: Beauty or Beast?
One of the most important facts we reviewed when deciding on the roto ray purchase was this; With the speeds of traffic on SC 278, by the time people heard the sirens on our fire trucks our light bars (on top of the roof) were out of sight. The roto ray, with its mounted location…
2014-07-25 15:07:00
Mick Mayers
Questioning Heroism
Thanks, Bryan! I genuinely believe I do and they tend to reward me with professionalism, innovation, and compassion to our citizens daily. That's something I am happy to facilitate.
2014-07-15 04:10:00
Bryan G. Riebe
Questioning Heroism
Chief, appreciated in your response to Geoff that you work for the FFs. Believe if more Chiefs lived that philosophy our fire services would be bastions of honor, ethics, and human potential.
2014-07-15 00:05:00
Christopher Roy
Questioning Heroism
Geoff, EMS, as its own service, does not have a strong voice and in turn, does not get the respect in the media/public that it does deserve. I do hope that changes. EMS doesn't have a home either, and that doesn't help. There are so many different delivery methods in this country that its probably…
2014-07-14 23:49:00
Mick Mayers
Questioning Heroism
I'm sorry you feel that way, Geoff. The department I work with has been doing EMS (advanced care AND transport) with cross-trained personnel for over twenty years and doing a pretty good job. Our community expects a certain level of service that we have been able to provide through that model and while not every…
2014-07-14 22:01:00

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Although I am affiliated or employed by certain entities, I in no way speak in this forum or others on behalf of those entities unless I have specifically stated such. Any implication otherwise is doing so contrary to my agreements with those entities. The result is that the observations and opinions by myself or on behalf of Firehouse Zen are not sanctioned by any other entity other than Graffiti Train Sherpa Publications and are protected by the copyright laws of the United States of America.

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