The Chief-Leader newspaper published two interesting pieces this week, the FIRST is an article by FDNY Hispanic Society President Lt. George Ricco Diaz titled, "FDNY Hispanic Leader Says Entrance Exam Not Biased."
A great piece written by Merit Matters President Chief Paul Mannix, entitled, "Both Sides of FDNY Racism"
Here is the full and unedited piece by Chief Paul Mannix;
October 27, 2011
Jose Garcia, intentionally or not, mischaracterizes the point made by Rocco DiMieri about FDNY racism. Garcia writes that, “It truly riles me up to have a white firefighter state that ‘no racism exists within the department’” (if you’re going to use quotation marks you have to get the quote correct, else you look asinine) although Lt. DiMieri never wrote that and has no control over the heading placed above his letter, which read “No Racism in FDNY”. While he could have made his point more succinctly, I believe Lt. DiMieri was commenting on the charges of systemic, endemic, top to bottom racism (“this great lie”) recently leveled in court by people who then curiously went on to say that the FDNY is the greatest job in the world. It is these same people, the Vulcan Society leadership and its ever dwindling (based on its philosophy, not demographics) number of supporters, who also demand that hiring decisions be made based on race which means Lt. Garcia is right- racism does exist in the FDNY, at least within one organization.
Lt. Garcia is also right that there were (and are) a few individuals who have no problem spewing the N or the S word, just as there are black and Hispanic racists. No group has a monopoly on virtue or vice. Those stories he heard from his members when he was President of the Hispanic Society- any chance it wasn’t racism that caused them to be treated badly? Even one time? If one individual has a problem everywhere they work, when other minorities get along just fine in those firehouses, could it maybe be because the problem is with that one person?
One of the most gratifying things about the group we have formed is the support from, not minority firefighters, but firefighters who happen to be minorities. That is not a distinction without a difference- those who support us are firefighters first and put the safety of New York’s residents and firefighters before the narrow and damaging agendas of dangerous whiners. Racism is thankfully marginalized in our society and that is proper- no matter what individual or organization it emanates from. Demanding that hiring decisions be made based on race (which said another way means not hiring someone based on race) is racist and should be marginalized- not excused, supported and promoted.
I would very much like to attend, as Lt. Garcia invites, a meeting of any fraternal group to discuss the issues concerning FDNY integration (especially a Vulcan Society meeting) and, consistent with our Mission Statement, will help anyone who is a victim of racism. As I once advised Charles Barron, I’m easy to find (although, alas and alack, he never did contact me) and will gladly accept any invitation offered.
President - Merit Matters