Monday, October 19, 2009

Suspended for the Flag?

And without pay.

Firefighters were told to keep the OUTSIDE of their lockers bare. This directive came about after a childish back and forth brought on by a cartoon posted by a Black fireman that some perceived as racist. The fireman was asked to take it down by the Commissioner (also Black if that matters) and in turn posted a sign that said "Black man has no free speech." When he wouldn't remove that by the fire Commissioner's request he was suspended until he took it down. (source)

I understand that a directive is a directive,but since a firefighter is being asked to remove THE AMERICAN FLAG because of an inmature event in which he had no involvement... well, it seems wrong. Having a cartoon or a sign/bumper sticker that has a certain message or point of view is one thing...but a flag? Would that offend anyone? Wouldn't that be an obvious exception?The directive could easily say -no alterations other than the American flag of station logo may adorn the outside of a locker...

James Krapf, an 11 year veteran of the department, is on his 2nd day of unpaid suspension.

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