Skip to main content

Speaking as a First Responder aka: PASS THE BILL

I had hoped my first post after so long an absence would be one that was lighthearted or some amusing anecdotes about the certifiable folks in my family. Alas, it was not meant to be. Although at some point there will undoubtedly be stories about my trip to California to bury my Pops, today is not the day. Instead I am having my Howard Beale moment. I am mad as hell and I am not going to remain quiet about what has provoked my ire: Our Senate.

I devoted many years of my life to being a 'first responder' most of which I did behind the comfort of a desk and radio, though not all. I was an EMT 1A and a volunteer firefighter and actually went out on a few calls when absolutely necessary. Working a flood in 1986, I got "Nearer my God to Thee" sick from sitting around in wet, contaminated clothes after walking through fetid water. Rescue work does not come with set hours. In a state of emergency you do what you must and keep going until your body stops. I remember taking a break and we "shopped" for food for rescue workers using a canoe; navigating the aisle of the local grocery store for canned items above the water line. I much preferred sitting in a warm, dry radio room telling people where to go and what to do when they got there. I was and remain fairly accomplished at doing so. Right now I want to tell our senate how to act regarding H.R.847 - James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act of 2010.

First responders know that they are entering a hazardous occupation. There is risk involved, that's part of the reason they enjoy their work. I will include myself when I say we like the adrenaline rush. If you didn't, you wouldn't do the job. While I was out sick for nearly two weeks, my body racked with fever and mysterious blotches over my skin, I was paid by the county that employed me. Had my illness left me permanently impaired, I would have qualified for workman's compensation. The events of 9/11 have been called an act of terrorism and war against the United States. The New York first responders who were able to respond were there immediately. First responders across the nation gave up their time and flocked to New York to help as soon as they could get there. Civilians responding to what was an act of war should have more consideration than being called heroes. They should be given more than lip service respect. They should be given the medical treatment they need for injuries sustained while working in the most horrific environment I can think of... breathing in toxins and the 'cremains' of those whose lives were lost during the attack of 9/11.

Shame on the Democrats for holding on to this bill for so long and then trying a last minute maneuver to get it passed. Why? To try and look good or to try and make Republicans look bad? You held the senate before this, if it was really important to you all, you would have gotten it done before now. Shame on the Republicans for worrying more about tax loopholes than taking care of those who willingly went into harms way. Shame on the President for not having made a statement of support. Do you not support this bill, President Obama? You supported bailouts for bad businesses but not bailing out our heroes? Or is just an honorary title that comes cheaply? And finally shame on me. That's right, shame on me for assuming that the men and women who gave so much to their country would be provided for at least as well as I was when I was a first responder.

Of all the lame-brained ways my government has come up with to spend tax money, this is one I can get behind. Sure, I am biased. I admit it. Even so, you have to admit that if this catastrophe had happened in another part of the world, the United States would be sending resources and funds by the millions to help them. It's time to help our own. Pass the bill.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Procrastination- Propaganda- Profundity

When I am studying something that bothers me, I do just about anything I can to stall. In doing so I stumble upon a lot of odd information. I love history and any student of history will tell you that most everything we are familiar with has had an odd beginning. Sometimes there will be different odd stories regarding the genesis of a myth, folkway or idiom. Somewhere in the mix the truth can be found. You just have to look.

While I lived in Australia I went to a visit a little town on the Murray River called Echuca. Echuca has a wonderful history and boasts the largest collection of paddle steamers in the world. It also has a coach house and carriage museum. It was during my visit to the carriage museum that I was told the origin of the expression to 'drop off to sleep.' According the docent, the carriage cheap seats were the ones outside and on the back. You had a platform to sit on and a rope or rail to hang onto for dear life. During a long trip a poor unfortun…

Sleep Snorkel Surprise

Summer colds. Blech! Is there anything more annoying that being too hot and having your nose run like Bridalveil Fall? Probably but nothing comes to mind right now. My nose is red and raw from all the sneezing and blowing and I have been using Puff's. Imagine if I had some generic sandpaper tissue instead? I could probably die from the pain. Death by runny nose rough tissue rhinoplasty.
I went to bed very early last night because I was feeling miserable. I have sleep apnea and therefore sleep with a bipap machine that keeps from crumping in my sleep. Now, I love my little bipap machine. I got it after my near death experience a few years ago when the nurses in the ICU turned me in to the doctor because I never slept. Once I was released from the hospital they sent me for a sleep study. I had to do it twice because they wait for you to fall to sleep and monitor your breathing in order to decide if you need a machine. Generally they try different types of machines and differe…

Fetal Alcohol Syndrome / Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder FAS/FASD and the Need for Biblical Counseling Material

On January 31, 2008, I wrote a post on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FAS/FASD).  That was nearly six years ago. A lot has happened in our world during those six years. I honestly expected to find some biblical counseling information on FAS/FASD.  Unfortunately, among those who are foremost in providing resources for biblical counselors; those who publish scholarly articles in the Journal of Biblical Counseling; provide resources for NANC, and write books that help us look at the problems in our lives through a biblical lens,  there has yet to be an article, sermon or book written specifically on how to help someone with FAS/FASD.  I am hoping using their information will lead them to this article and they will consider changing this. We need material on FAS/FASD from a biblical perspective.

Recently I have been contacted by a couple of different people who stumbled upon my blog looking for biblical counseling resources specific to parenting children with…