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  1. #141
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    hctrouble25

    but many of the men are taking offense to the term "female fire fighter".

    Don't feel singled out, I take offense to the term white firefighter, hispanic firefighter, latino firefighter, (what's the difference in hispanic and latino?) indian firefighter, blue haired firefighter, black firefighter, gay firefighter, old firefighter, bisexual firefighter, transexual firefighter, transgendered firefighter, short firefighter, fat firefighter, short and fat firefighter, lazy firefighter, drunk firefighter, sleepy firefighter, dopey firefighter, sneezy firefighter, doc firefighter, rudolf firefighter, blitzin' firefighter (unless that's what he/she is doing) prancer firefighter, and the list goes on. The only one that is OK for me is rookie, recruit, boot or retired firefighter.

    They feel that by using this term that we want to be treated differently or in special manner.

    You want recognition because you happen to be a female (I could care less as long as you perform) and are lucky enough to be a firefighter. If you didn't, you would have never mentioned it, you would have just asked the questions.

    Michelle Latham

    I gotta ask (maybe Althea will find the questions amusing too!)...

    Why is your probie nickname HurryUpMichelle?

    And some genius asked (I can't find the post) why it was OK for Japanese firefighters to be smaller than American women.

    Do you really need to be told why it's OK for Japanese firefighters to be smaller?

    And did you see any Japanese women firefighters?

    Just so you all know, I'm fightin' the urge to post one of my long diatribes on this topic...

    [ 06-30-2001: Message edited by: mongofire_99 ]
    It's only my opinion. I do not speak for any group or organization I belong to or associate with or people I know - especially my employer. If you like it, we can share it, you don't have to give me credit. If you don't, we are allowed to disagree too (but be ready to be challenged, you may be on to something I'm not). That's what makes America great!


  2. #142
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    I STILL think that any woman who uses the term 'femalefirefighter' to describe herself knows very little about, and cares very little about, her foresisters from the 60s and 70s, most of whom had to file very costly and time comsuming lawsuits just to get on a fire department - and then had to go through living hell to earn a little respect.

    They didn't want to be called 'femalefirefighters' - they wanted to be called 'firefighter' and it was only through their no-quit and do-or-die efforts proving themselves time and time again that the term fireman eventually gave way to the all inclusive term firefighter.

    Ignore your history, your roots and use it if you like - but using 'femalefirefighter' instead of 'firefighter' very clearly displays an abysmal lack of respect towards your foresisters .... who, by the way, you owe, OWE, O-W-E for what you now take for granted. Now .... when is THAT going to sink into YOUR heads?

  3. #143
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    I really can't believe this dusty, musty, and rusty old topic is still going strong. Unplug those lava lamps, take off your peace beads, tied died tees, Brady bunch bell bottoms and PLEASE say "Hello" to 2001.

    Now for a little free psychology 101:

    The femalefirefighters' contumacy towards their use of that archaic and improper demonstrative pronoun is an exhibit of an inferior perception of their self-confidence and self-reliance and displays a propensity for seeking delusive validation.

    Sorry, but our time is up.

    See you at your next appointment.

  4. #144
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    Unless you are; a) from a family with several generations in the fire service, or b) with a fire department that has a written and photographic history, or c) with a fire department that has 'older' active members that can pass along the oral history of the department through stories and anecdotes you can not know all about the traditions, histories, or possibly know anything about what transpired before you became a member.

    That's exactly what's happening here with the use of the term 'femalefirefighter' and the staunch opposition to using it.

    Anyone who lived through, witnessed, knows, read about, or heard about the struggles that the first females had will also know how important earning the term 'firefighter' was to them, and how very offensive 'femalefirefighter' 'ladfyfirefighter' 'ladylieutenant' 'ladycaptain' and so on were. That's just history; no ifs, ands, or buts, and no one can rewrite it.

    History and tradition are important to firefighters, and we must never forget, and we must always honor those that came before us - in word and in deed.

  5. #145
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    i was not gonna even begin to comment on this topic, but after reading and reading i decided to say a couple things.. first of all,"hc" it seems like your the one who is never gonna get it, you think that just because your a female firefighter you should be treated special, that was stated at the beginning of this topic and pretty much the whole way through it all you do is say, i do this and i do that and im changing this and that, pat yourself on the back then get off your high horse... so many do so much for the fire service, male and female and you dont see them all on here praising themselves..if you are in it to be praised cause you are a female in a mostly male profession your in it for the wrong reasons.. and now for all the men who think women dont belong in the service... as far as women not being able to pull there own and that, well guys i have seen my fare share of men who are the same way.. i've seen firemen who may weigh 100 pounds wet if their lucky, and your sayin just because there male they can do the job...afraid not...maybe someday when the only person around to drag your collapsed asses out of a burning building is a woman you'll chage your mind..if not then i'm sure the hell glad men like you dont belong to my department cause there sure not needed...

  6. #146
    Senior Member hctrouble25's Avatar
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    [ 07-02-2001: Message edited by: hctrouble25 ]

  7. #147
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    It's so hard to be blunt without sounding rude - so read this post with that in mind. I'm not saying any of this with anger.

    I'm sure there were many female firefighters in the past who were not offended by the term "Female firefighter." while some were offended because that title mean that they were inferior to men. If the title "Female Firefigher" denoted that I was somehow inferior then I would be offended when it was used. However, I've never known Female firefighter, lady firefighter, or firegirl to mean "You are not as good as a male firefighter." I am a woman and I am a firefighter and if both of those titles are said in the same breath, I don't care. I have more things to worry about like... firefighting! Therefore, no matter how some of my firefighter fore-sisters felt, I am not offended by any of those titles and I am not ignoring my history or undermining the hard work of those female firefighters who paved the road I now walk on with relative ease and equality. I've paved a few roads myself as a female helicopter mechanic and female Gulf War veteran. I'm also paving new roads as a female firefighter that future generations of ladies will walk along. If they are not offended by titles that I'm now offended by in this present time, who cares! As long as they can follow their dreams without being harassed, attacked, sexually assaulted/offended/harassed, or held back from promotions they deserve, I don't care what doesn't offend them.
    That goes for future male firefighters as well. May they always be as free as men are now.
    As for Japanese firefighters ... uh...I have no clue about any of that stuff...
    My Probie nickname "HurryUpMichelle" comes from firefighter I classes - where I'm always falling behind the guys because the are bigger, faster, and stronger then me. Everyone is always saying, "Hurry up Michelle!" hahahaha!
    God bless and stay safe !!!
    Probie Name: HurryUpMichelle!!

  8. #148
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    This isn't intended to offend anyone,especially the females out there who are firefighters.It has been my experience that women don't perform the same way that men do on the fire scene.I'm sure that some of them would out do some men on firegrounds,but that's a lsmall percent.
    I ran a chimney fire once a couple of years ago and after a simple little water can job from the roof,we went to get down.It was me and another female,I went first leaving the roof ladder for her to bring dwon when she came.Needless to say she brought it down ok,right over her shoulders with her head sticking between.The worst part was that she started crying right in front of the whole street assignment.It was hillarious!
    So if you can do the job,then more power to you.But you have to realize that from a males perspective we will be doubting you until you prove yourselves.

  9. #149
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    TWR-

    You kind of left me hagin' here. Did she cry because she carried the ladder improperly? I can't tell by your story. If not, why exactly did she cry?

    As a female, I understand your concerns - honestly, and I've worked with women who get a little carried away. By nature, we are more emotional than most men. And I can see how your experience makes you think again about the efficiency of women on the fireground. But for every woman who can't control her emotions because she can't handle the job, there are ten women like myself who focus those emotions into the passions we have for our jobs, and they make us better. I hope your next experience with a female firefighter is such (good luck, bro! )

    But please keep this in mind: for every woman who has cried on the fireground, I've seen a male who is such a frickin SPAZ (both drivers and those going into structures) that I will refuse to go into a structure with him. They're just as likely to make dumb decisions that get me killed as a woman on a hormonal breakdown.

    ANY FIREFIGHTER - MAN OR WOMAN - who cannot control their emotions in a safe and efficent manner does NOT belong on the fireground.
    We're all in this together. FDNY 9-11-01

  10. #150
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    You all seem to be having so much fun with this I dont know if I want to comment of not, but I will anyway. I had a sister that was a firefighter and a dam good one at that. She was better than most men I know. Belive it or not she had a lot more common sense and an ability to think about things before she ran into them. I think a woman can do the job as good as a man if she puts her mind to it. Dont let them ride you ladies to hard just be good at what you do and enjoy it while you do it but do it safe!!!

  11. #151
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    I have worked with female career firefighters and volunteer female firefighters. I can honestly say that the majority of them were damned good at what they do. Some were better drivers than the guys I worked with. And there are a few that I can honestly say, I would much rather have backing me up...or back them up than some of the guys. People need to drop the games and treat everyone equal. Male or female the question is....Can you do the job? If you can...then who cares if you are male or female. My girlfriend is a firefighter/Paramedic in Tarpon Springs Florida. I respect her for what she does and how she handles herself. She is competing in the relay portion of the Firefighter Combat Challenge in New Orleans with 4 other firefighters who are darned good and very dedicated. The people she works with respect her and most say..."I want you there, because I know I can count on you!" So...keep hammering away....all of you female firefighters and some day the wall will come down just as the "Berlin Wall" did.

    Stay Safe

    [ 07-16-2001: Message edited by: captstanm1 ]
    09-11 .. 343 "All Gave Some..Some Gave ALL" God Bless..R.I.P.
    ------------------------------
    IACOJ Minister of Southern Comfort
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    BMI Investigator
    ------------------------------
    The comments, opinions, and positions expressed here are mine. They are expressed respectfully, in the spirit of safety and progress. They do not reflect the opinions or positions of my employer or my department.

  12. #152
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    Sounds like some of us might be too close to the issue to have an objective point-of-view. I wonder what people outside the fire service who have looked into it objectively think?

    New York Post Editorial:
    Feb. 6, 2000; Page 52
    TALKING SENSE ON FEMALE FIREFIGHTERS
    After nearly two decades and many, many good-faith efforts to integrate women into the New York City Fire Department, the number of female firefighters remains low. Some would say scandalously low: There are only 36 women in the FDNY's entire 11,000-member force. And only 11 women did well enough on the latest round of tests to become candidates for hiring. A few activists, including the United Women Firefighters -- a necessarily small organization -- believe the city should be doing even more to produce a higher proportion of women in the ranks. It's hard to see what more, in fact, could be done. It's time to face facts and realize this is not a crisis, but just reality: Men have greater upper-body strength than women and -- generally speaking -- can move heavy loads from one point to another faster than women. And, in this particular line of work, strength and speed are life itself -- for firefighters and for those they are called upon to save. More than any other public-service occupation -- perhaps even more than the police force -- firefighting demands rigorous physical training. A perfect score of 100 on the physical test is usually a requirement for hiring, and it is not surprising that very few women qualify. More than 40 percent of male applicants fail to reach that bar. So the number of women remains low, even though the tests have been fine-tuned to de-emphasize raw muscle. The exams were rejiggered to reflect the notions of Judge Charles Sifton, who -- while presiding over a sexual-discrimination suit in 1985 -- found that upper-body strength to be largely "irrelevant" to firefighting. Just how do today's physical tests reflect Sifton's peculiar reasoning? Instead of assessing how much weight a candidate can bench-press, the current exams emphasize real-situation skills, such as feeding 50 feet of water-filled hose to a fellow firefighter in a set amount of time. But the results still demonstrate that -- relative both to men and to the clock -- most women lack the forearm and grip strength to use a hand-over-hand method to feed one section of hose, while pulling on the next. Simply put, having a physically incapable member of a fire department risks lives: That individual's, other members of the squad -- and, most important, civilians in need of rescue. And this is not to overlook that a certain amount of self-selection occurs in the decision to become a firefighter. Of the 850 women who originally registered for last September's written test, almost half dropped out beforehand. And of the 350 who passed the written exam, only a third chose to take the physical test in December. Finally, as noted, only 11 passed that test. And so, New York's Bravest remain 99 percent male. This reflects a simple truth: In certain cases, sometimes biology really is destiny. Tinkering with tests won't change that -- nor should it.

  13. #153
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    Point of order, capt stan:

    Did you mean the berlin wall?

    Last I heard, the great wall is still winding it's way up the chinese mountains.

    couldn't resist.

  14. #154
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    Yes...thats what I meant...(I knew what i meant...hehehehehe)and as you can see...i have made the correction.

    Nozzlehog......your mentality is one that will get people hurt. A newspaper article will say anything to get readers. What if it had said something similar about all the males who fail. Sure..statistically, a higher percentage of females fail because there are less of them and while most "want to do the job" they are not adequately prepared. However, conversely....I have administered test where a large majority of the people taking it were female and they kicked butt. I have also seen tests where 50 or 60 males test (smaller depts) and 60% fail for one reason or another..... WAKE UP and accept the change!

    PS>>>the term "fireman" is no longer politically correct. I believe it is FIREFIGHTER!
    09-11 .. 343 "All Gave Some..Some Gave ALL" God Bless..R.I.P.
    ------------------------------
    IACOJ Minister of Southern Comfort
    "Purple Hydrant" Recipient (3 Times)
    BMI Investigator
    ------------------------------
    The comments, opinions, and positions expressed here are mine. They are expressed respectfully, in the spirit of safety and progress. They do not reflect the opinions or positions of my employer or my department.

  15. #155
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    The point of this topic was not to point out the males that fail. We all know that there are a lot of men out there who can't do the job either. The topic was about females. Like I've said before, if you can do the job, then get on my firetruck. However, I have yet to meet a woman who can do the job.

    Oh yeah, captstanm1, political correctness is for the birds. I have been and always will be a fireman and am damn proud of that.
    Move fast or move aside...

  16. #156
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    I have no problem with it as along as they don't start acting as mom, your wife, and the "barn Boss"

  17. #157
    Senior Member Smoke286's Avatar
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    I have seen some people come in the job over the years who were not suited to it, Men and women, We cant do anything about who they hire. But those that cant do the job just wont stay the course, they transfer off the floor, or just quit. You have to be able to trust the people you work with in this job. If they cant do it, they just cant stay, bottom line

  18. #158
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    Nozzlehog- Kick *** post and article. It makes such simple, logical sense. How can anyone not understand it???

    Captstanm1- Wake up and accept reality...and give me one good reason why anyone should give a flying f*ck about what's a politically correct term, and what is not.

  19. #159
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    Captstanm1 -

    Not to pile on here, brother, but that was a seriously WEAK argument you put forth. The Post editorial was right on the money...and contrary to what you've said, it's attitudes like *yours* that will eventually get people killed.

    When we start lowering standards in order to admit more of a certain class of people, we're on the road to more death and injury.

    Note - I don't have a problem with women who can do the job. I DO have a problem with apologists who want women in the fire service come hell or high water, for no better reason than "political correctness". And I have a problem with females who constantly have to point out, in so many ways, that they ARE females - therefore, that they are somehow different and set apart as firefighters. As far as I'm concerned, if you can pass the tests, make it through the training, and perform on the fireground, you're a firefighter. I don't really give a sh*t whether or not you have a vagina. All I want to know is - should you be here, and can you do the work? If the answer is yes on both counts, then hell yes, let's GET SOME!
    "Let's roll." - Todd Beamer, one of a group of American soldiers who handed the terrorists their first defeat.

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    The opinions expressed are mine and mine alone (but you can borrow them )and may not reflect those of any organization with which I am associated (but then again, they just may not be thinking clearly).

  20. #160
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    Originally posted by captstanm1:
    Sure..statistically, a higher percentage of females fail because there are less of them and while most "want to do the job" they are not adequately prepared
    CaptStanm1:

    As a female and a personal trainer, I am offended by this comment. Physically, men and women are NOT created equal. And thus, any physical ability test requring extreme upper body strength is INHERENTLY not in our favor. Lets all learn to accept that.

    So, where does that leave women in the fire service? It means that those who train hard to build the upper body strength (or those who are gifted with such strength) will time and time again succeed in these PATs and contribute in wealth to their department in that capacity. Lack of women passing PATs has nothing to do with the male-to-female applicant ratio. Zippo. Zilch. Damnit, those PATs are hard...so don't beat yourself up playing the sex card on top of it.

    You say that the women who take the test which you administer kick butt. Why do you think that is? Were they all of such physique that they did well? Are they all waifs? Or is your test not that hard?

    And what do you mean by your comment that most "want to do the job" but they are not adequately prepared? If they're not prepared, they shouldn't get the job. Plain and simple. If they can't prepare for a PAT test that they've known about for weeks (or months, or years), can I really trust them to be prepared on the fireground?

    I've seen plenty of women not pass these tests. But I've seen plenty who kick ***** and take names. Those are who I want on my department - and I don't want my department making exceptions. Please, please, please - some of us need to quit looking at the world through rose-colored glasses, and quit measuring a woman's self-worth against the physical abilities test. I'm almost feeling some very unconfident vibes from women in this forum who feel they need to come out of the corners swinging at those who think they don't belong.

    Don't get me wrong...I don't particularly care for those who feel that women don't belong in this service. However, they have a right to their own opinions. And I can certainly understand how one bad experience with a female firefighter can turn into a stereotype. But I'm happy where I am, and love the guys and gals I work with. And as long as the people I work with trust me, I don't give a rat's behind what LAFD, FDNY or anyone else thinks.

    [ 07-17-2001: Message edited by: bgfdchick ]
    We're all in this together. FDNY 9-11-01

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