Thread: letting the mutts win?
06-13-2002, 12:02 PM #1
letting the mutts win?
I got a question.
As some of you may or may not know, I was suspended for two weeks while at a training burn (long story involving me and a mutt with a white hat... I lost). Anyway, it has been two weeks now and I should be going to drill/practice tonight.
My plan was to have a nicely typed letter for the head white hat stating that I did not agree with my suspension, but served it none-the-less and that immediately following my re-instatement I would be resigning all of my addition duties that I hold (those other then firefighter) until a time yet to be determined. This would be a huge blow to the department (no, I am not blowing my own horn, ask two-7, I spend hundreds of hours down there doing maintenance, inspections, tours, cleaning, filing, etc). I had decided this because I believe some of the problems with this mutt in a white hat is that I have more respect and pull around the station then he does. If something needs to be done, the chief asks me, not him. That was my plan. However, I am torn because I know that if I don't do my inspections/maintenance, etc they will not get done.
Further to that, up until my suspension I had 100% percent practice/drill attendance and I am finding myself considering dropping my letter off and leaving.
I am not an officer, nor would I want to be. I consider myself a non-com. When things need to be done, I like being in the trenches doing them.
I hate losing, and I hate losing to mutts even more. So, my question is, am I letting the mutts win this one?
Just looking for some feed back, I still have until this evening to decided what I want to do."No one ever called the Fire Department for doing something smart..."
06-13-2002, 01:13 PM #2
Write the letter, show up, stay there, do the stuff that matters towards fire fighting, let the administrative stuff go, you still have the love for firefighting so keep on doing it. You are not there for him, you are there for you.
06-13-2002, 02:05 PM #3
4 little words
You leave...he wins.Steve Gallagher
"I don't apologize for anything. When I make a mistake, I take the blame and go on from there." - Woody Hayes
06-13-2002, 02:09 PM #4
yeah, that was pretty much what I was thinking."No one ever called the Fire Department for doing something smart..."
06-13-2002, 02:48 PM #5
I agree with everyone else, if you leave he wins.
In thinking about the maintenance and inspections, I'm sure that you have a log book there to keep track of when the inspections were done. If they aren't getting done, let someone else point it out. If you do it, it might look like you are going on a witch hunt, even though your concern is for safety, because of the previous history with the DC. It isn't that if you point out the infractions they wont be taken seriously, but I think if someone else were to point them out it would be taken MORE seriously, simply because it will be viewed as an unbias opinion. I'm sure the guys on your crew are all aware of what happened, and they'll have your back on it.
06-13-2002, 02:59 PM #6
- Join Date
- Nov 2000
- Sitting on my Laa Laa waiting for my Yaa Yaa
I would ask myself, "If I don't do this, who will? If it doesn't get done, will anyone be put at risk?" Seems to me that you need to think of the implications of you actions in terms of how they will effect the safety of the other members in the company as well as how it will affect you. Good luck with the decision. It's hard to take a stand and stick with it in your circumstances. I'm sure you'll know what is right for you by meeting time.Chris Minick, P.E., Firefighter II
Structures Specialist, MD-TF 1
These statements are mine and mine alone
I.A.C.O.J. Building crust and proud of it
06-13-2002, 03:19 PM #7
Steamer said it perfectly.
You consider yourself a non-com, ask the biggest white hat what he considers is suitable activities for you to be doing, and what is Occifer teritory.
Then leave those functions to your problem man, he will either sink or swim in those functions, the choice is his.
One of the arts of being a good Occifer is delegation, if he can't cope he should delegate responsibility, he probably will ensure for a while that you are the last person delegated, but thats ok.
You mention the respect and pull around the station, well that is natural for a senior non-com. Part of that function is at times knowing a damn site more than some officers, it lets them get on with their job, and you can always lead them to one side and say to the effect of "Well Sir, you may want it done that way, but the men would be better of doing it this way, its just a suggestion Sir."
He becomes the man of the moment for getting it right, you get the satisfaction of house training him.
I do not belive that in your heart you could walk away from the job.
It's just going to take some time to get the attitude right.
Good Luck, Eh.
06-13-2002, 03:25 PM #8
You are in a hard spot, bro. In a volunteer organization, as I think yours is, it shouldn't fall to just one person to do everything. That being said, everything else needs to fall to the wayside when you enter that truck bay. I would suggest that you mention at the next meeting creating a "truck captain" position. This can be a regular FF who is responsible for each truck,and doing inspections on a weekly basis, or more often if needed. Explain that at this time in your life, you cannot continue to devote as many hours to the station as you have in the past. This should give you the space you need, without making it a further confrontation with no real winners. Good luck, and let us know how it goes."Illigitimi Non Carborundum"
"The views expressed by me are solely my own, and in no way reflect the views of any organization which I belong to."
06-13-2002, 08:38 PM #9
- Join Date
- Jan 1999
Personal opinion.....show up, do the drill and act like it never happened. Keep doing your stuff, and show them you are the better person. Maybe the Chief will figure out what the Deputy really is after that. I would also ask the Chief if there is a letter in your file, and if so, read it, if you don't agree with it then write up you disagreement and have that filed too.
06-14-2002, 12:11 AM #10
ummm...yeah, what Dave said!"The education of a firefighter and the continued education of a firefighter is what makes "real" firefighters. Continuous skill development is the core of progressive firefighting. We learn by doing and doing it again and again, both on the training ground and the fireground."
Lt. Ray McCormack, FDNY
06-14-2002, 02:35 AM #11
What happened??? Inquiring minds want to know...
06-14-2002, 08:38 AM #12IACOJ Agitator
Fightin' Da Man Since '78!
06-14-2002, 12:04 PM #13
- Join Date
- Sep 2001
- No. Providence R.I. : Land of the "How ya doins"
Just do your thing. Don't let the coneheads bring you down."I have no ambition in this world but one, and that is to be a fireman. The position may, in the eyes of some, appear to be a lowly one; but we know the work which a fireman has to do believe that his is a noble calling."
Edward F. Croker
Fire Dept. City of New York
HOOK N' CAN of the I.A.C.O.J.
06-14-2002, 05:54 PM #14
- Join Date
- Feb 2001
- Illinois-where pertnear is close enough!
I went back and got caught up with your situation. Please understand that I am merely voicing my opinion here.
Usually, I try to stay within rank when it comes to administrative decisions made by those who wear white hats. It is obvious that I wear one and will until next March when I will resign as Chief to run for a Trustee's seat on the board.
If you are accurate in your description and I have no reason to think otherwise, then you definitely got the short end of the bull's horn. Your due process was violated and volunteer or career, everyone has a right to due process. What I find most disturbing is, if the DC acted in that way, then he is guilty of conduct unbecoming.
It would be a serious detriment to your department if you chose to leave. And I know what is happening with you right now; every time you think about getting off of the department, you get very emotional. Why? Because you have the heart of a firefighter and firefighters DON'T QUIT. It goes against our nature. Think of all of the tough situations that you have been in in your life and I think you will make the right decision in this one. It's not you vs. him; it's about maintaining the quality of your fire department. You can resolve this situation with the Chief, DC and yourself without risk of splitting the department. If a sit down doesn't resolve it, then you have a right to a full hearing and I don't think anyone wants to put the department through that. We can't let ourselves become bigger than our departments. We must do whatever is necessary for the good of the department; whatever the cost.
I had an old chief ride me like a mule. He served as chief for just two years after I joined the department. He finally gave up on trying to get me to quit. I am a chief entering my fourteenth year. If I had done what he wanted, I never would have reached my potential. And with humility, I can say that our department is better for it.
So go with your heart. You don't have to quit, but you don't have to be a door mat, either. You have my full support. Just tell me what to do. It is my nature to stick my nose where it doesn't belong.
COJs unite and help this lad.
I will be the voice of Reason.
06-14-2002, 07:09 PM #15
And a damn fine voice to.Psychiatrists state 1 in 4 people has a mental illness.
Look at three of your friends, if they are ok, your it.
06-14-2002, 07:57 PM #16
- Join Date
- Jan 1999
and the answer is....
Very Well Put.........
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