Would you charge the fire?

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It has been three weeks since the Florida school murders and it is still making news. Maybe someone will come up with a real solution to mass shootings, but I doubt it, especially if we are thinking that there is a legislative solution. There isn’t a magic wand you can wave and have all of our problems go away.

A few years ago, a Viet Nam Marine told me a story about a night when he heard a gunshot outside his home. He turned out the lights and went outside to see what was going on. As he was standing in the darkness, he told me he whispered to himself, “This is stupid.” He then went inside and called 911. He said with a smile, “After 40 years, you still charge the fire.” I’m not sure what kind of training he had, but it has stuck with him his whole life.

The police officer in Florida not only did not charge the fire he told everyone else to stay back. If there is a hell, he is on his way.

We’ve learned that not all police officers charge the fire, but firemen do, every day. When someone tells a fireman there is a child, disabled person, or a family pet in a burning building, in they go. You see pictures of them carrying out everything from children, old people, cats and dogs.

I think that is why we hold police, fire and military personnel in such high regard. They charge the fire when others might not. I’m not sure if they are public servants because of their willingness to risk their lives for others, or if their training teaches them to go into harm’s way. Maybe it is in their DNA and that is why they serve.

I think teachers have a certain gene that allows them to be patient, kind, hardworking and tolerant. I did not serve in the military and I don’t think I could be a police officer, but I know for sure that I was never going to be a teacher. No patience, not always that nice, I think of myself as hardworking, no job too menial for me to take, and I’m not very tolerant of intolerant people.

Someone brought up fake news to me, with a smirk on his face. I explained that 50 percent of the people get their news from newspapers and those that get their news from the internet are just stupid. His smirk disappeared when I asked him where he got his news from? A teacher, I’m not.

Sure, newspapers make mistakes, jump to conclusions a little too soon at times, or have a bias when they are reporting, but they don’t publish fake news on purpose. If we make a mistake, you will see a correction in the next issue. When a fake news story goes viral on the internet, there is no correction and no taking it back.

There are people who are attacking parents of dead children that were murdered in school shootings. They put out fake news and tell the parents that they are liars and their children never existed, even asking for birth certificates. I’m not sure what crimes these horrible people are committing, but I hope there is a special place in hell for them, too.

There will be some type of gun legislation passed around the country, but will it do anything to stop the violence? California has some of the toughest gun laws in the US, but I’m not sure how you stop someone from walking into a health clinic and killing those that were trying to help.

Try and have a good week.

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