Council lauded for taking time
The recent publicity regarding the city council and fire district consolidation is concerning to me. Dallas Fire & EMS is a place of belonging, a deep-rooted family that has a historically rich tradition of taking care of each other and being a sense of pride for our community. The volunteers and staff that have built this reputation are people of this community that have chosen time and time again to drop what they are doing at a moment’s notice to help their neighbors when they need it the most. Not for praise or high investment returns, but because it is something they love.
What some might not realize is that there are members of this family on the city council. Yes, the same city council that has been painted to be a source of contention and lack of “progress” as if they only want control and don’t care about response concerns. I can tell you from personal experience that they care deeply about the department, and have taken the time to listen to every side of the story. The same level of commitment needed to volunteer in the fire service.
Thank you, council members, for not being a victim. The fear tactics, incomplete statistics, and grand design theories are not what we need.
At no point should any one person or organization try to dupe us into a very permanent change. I sincerely appreciate your support and dedication to our community and making sure we are getting what is best.
Time to put the venom aside
RESPONSE TO LETTERS published in the Jan. 23 Itemizer.
President Trump is the elected president of the United States. The electoral vote was 304-227. He did not “manipulate the democratic process through lies and fear mongering.” He won because of promises made to the American people. One promise kept is that the African American, Hispanic, and Asian American unemployment is at a historical low. This doesn’t seem to be an accomplishment a “racist” would want to achieve.
It was stated that President Trump’s agenda was to “rule like a king and reduce democracy to a system of autocratic rule.” Our country is a republic, which differs from a democracy by the limits placed on government by the law. Our constitution guarantees the rule of law. We as citizens, pledge our “allegiance to the flag of the United States and to the republic for which it stands.” That is the president’s agenda.
He promised to secure the borders. A statement in one of the letters said, “Trump claims that brown people are criminals with violent histories, raging in violent swarms across our southern borders, aiming to destroy us.” There is evidence of gangs, human traffickers, drug cartels, etc. President Trump believes in the rule of law and secure borders. Our border must be controlled. According to OAN, 13,915 people have illegally crossed our border between Jan. 1 and Jan. 25 of this year. It has cost our country $18.6 billion during the same time period. Democrats refuse to fund a wall even though in 2016 they voted for it. I ask that we put the venom aside; respect the president; quit calling conservatives racists; and support secure borders.
Experience leaves bad taste
It is a shame that a handshake is no longer accepted as a seal of good faith for services rendered. Back in April 2018, I took our two vehicles to a local new oil change company. Within a week the engine in our 2014 Towne and Country began make some noise in the engine, and two weeks later my wife told me she would not drive the car until I had it checked. I checked the oil myself only to find no oil on the dip stick. I returned to the service center to show them what the problem was. I made the mistake of going into the lounge area. The technician told me the oil was full. Miracle was my reply, and at that moment the technician told me, “After you go to the dealership for a diagnosis come back and the company will make it right.”
I had to replace the engine at a cost of $8,831. When I returned to the oil company and several phone calls later, I was told they did not intend to cover the cost. Even with low mileage, they denied any responsibility.
I am a disabled Vietnam Veteran and am appalled at the treatment received. Polk County Circuit Court filed a general judgment against the company with a 9 percent interest. I have not been contacted by the Register Agent to resolve this issue.
My advice is never turn your back on a technician or trust a large corporation to do it right.
Rude behavior reflects examples
It may be that rude disruptive behavior at school events sadly reflects similar behaviors at home. While cursing a TV may harm no one except imitative children, such actions in public may be actionable.
More to the point, all must know the race is not always to the swift, much less to one’s favorite.
Does one need to learn to lose? Yes, in games. Yet, in real life, one must plan to win and prepare to win. Despite mortal peril, honor always triumphs.
Example: Sometimes in a blink of an eye, kindness may become a terrible test. One of my sons, a law officer in street clothes in his own car, recently came upon a minor collision. Seeing a woman slumped in a car he stopped to offer assistance. She appeared distraught, but lowered her window to say, “He hit me.” Who hit you? “That man hit me in the forehead.” Marks of a blow were visible. My son glanced up to see a large man running toward him as though to tackle him. He had time only to turn a shoulder toward the man before being thrown to the ground. They struggled at roadside, back and forth on the fog-line as cars drove by. My son had to wrestle with his bruised arm while protecting his weapon with the other. He did manage to turnover the miscreant and cuff him after bouncing his face on the pavement. Finally the police arrived. I’m sure other lawmen have had similar experiences.
Plan to win? A must! Prepare to win? Yes. My son had shortly prior been an instructor to other agents in unarmed combat. Scary for him? Yes. Scary to me as parent? Absolutely!
We all have tests. We all can prepare. If we do fail, we can fail with honor.
Michael R. Jackson
Trump continues to be insensitive
Apparently holding 800,000-plus people hostage by shutting down the government to get a wall is OK.
On Dec. 11, Trump said he’d be proud to shut it down to get it. I’m not sure why the Democrats won’t give in — in the meeting before the shutdown, according to VP Pence, Trump did bring candy to the meeting. (Does candy fix everything?)
On Dec. 18, Trump says Isis in Syria is defeated, just to have four military personnel killed on the 19th in Syria by Isis. And on Jan 29, Trump’s top intelligence officers state North Korea is still a nuclear threat, Iran is not a nuclear threat, and Russia will again meddle in 2020 elections. To this, Trump says “maybe intelligence should go back to school.”
During the cold snap on the East Coast, Trump tweets “global warming come back, we need you.” That is not what NOAA says.
The government has reissued grazing permits on Federal land to the Hammonds who were sentenced for arson that burned Federal lands — after Trump pardons the Hammonds.
In January 2019, Trump responded to a video Sen. Elizabeth Warren posted where she drinks a beer in her kitchen and introduces her husband by saying, “If Elizabeth Warren did this commercial from Bighorn or Wounded Knee ... it would be a smash.” His reference to Wounded Knee is unacceptable as the 7th Cavalry massacred hundreds of Lakota Indians.
Does he have a clue as to what happened? I think not.
And I wonder — if he couldn’t Tweet, would Trump know how to run the country?
Fire plan leaves more questions
Last week I had the opportunity to attend the Fire Consortium meeting in Dallas. What I heard were ideas on how money could be saved if all fire departments used the same copier machine.
The four agencies couldn’t agree if they could use the same mechanic to maintain and repair emergency vehicles. I also heard how one agency makes money when members go on wildfire conflagrations. I heard how money could be saved if all four agencies combined staff positions, but only three have employees. What surprised me the most is that I didn’t hear how the residents of all four communities, especially those like my family who live in Dallas, would receive a better and faster response in an emergency.
The Dallas City Council has made significant investments in our community’s fire and EMS over the past few years — five new emergency response vehicles and the addition of seven new full-time response personnel. Why? To reduce response times and provide better service. I am a supporter of regional solutions for regional issues, but do we really think we can simply take the limited staff positions we have now and expect them to do the same hard work for four agencies instead of two? I applaud the discussions, but before we jump into a merger, let’s do the math and find out if Dallas will actually get a better service for a better rate. If not we will be “thinning the soup” with the assumption that all that glitters is gold. A staffed fire truck or ambulance 30 minutes away doesn’t seem to fit the bill.