ATLANTA, GA- A firefighter has been placed on suspension without pay – for attempting to save the life of a woman in a burning building.
If that sounds unbelievable to you, you can believe that sounds the same to us.
Call us crazy, but aren’t firefighters typically commended on their bravery for rescuing people from burning buildings?
Back in June of 2019, Captain Daniel Thomas Dwyer was present when trying to tame the flames of a house fire in northwest Atlanta on June 28th.
Atlanta Fire and Rescue responded to the home on Collier Drive Northwest at 1:00 a.m. that morning, where the 1-story home was fortified with burglar bars and required the door to be broken down to gain entry.
Inside the burning home was 95-year-old Sallie Skrine, where officials believed after their investigation a stove burner was left one which caused the fire. As a result, the wood frame house eventually wound up engulfed in flames.
Captain Dwyer was able to see that the woman was trapped inside the burning home, inside of the dining room.
According to policy procedure, Captain Dwyer should have waited for additional firefighters to aid in the rescue, but time was of the essence in this matter.
Instead of waiting for additional support, he braved the flames and made his way into the home to attempt to save the woman’s life. Sadly, first responders were unable to revive Skrine, despite Captain Dwyer wasting no time to try and save the woman.
Now, the captain is getting reprimanded for his heroics.
Union President Paul Curtis stated the following on the matter:
“Captain Dwyer had to crawl through the flames while removing the homeowner. Temperatures probably reached well over 1100 degrees. You can see as soon as captain Dwyer gets the homeowner out that the other crew members are meeting up with him to pull her off the front porch.”
Video of the blaze shows the gravitas of the flames that Captain Dwyer faced in order to enter the home that early morning.
There’s a unique sense of courage that comes with firefighters, but what exactly does reprimanding the embodiment of bravery do to the morale of firefighters? The last thing we should be doing to our first responders is creating pause when it’s time to deliver on life-saving measures.
Curtis then noted on the absurdity of how this act of bravery has now formed into discipline:
“And now captain Dwyer is now facing a 48-hour suspension without pay for doing the actions that are typical of firefighters. Running into burning buildings and saving the public.”
When it comes down to saving a life in the heat of the moment, with this case being a perfect example of that colloquialism, it can often present a “now or never” instance. Curtis also spoke to that effect:
“Captain Dwyer had to make a split section decision about should I attempt a rescue at this particular time, or should I delay my rescue efforts until more of my crew members can join me?”
Chief Randall Slaughter, of the Atlanta Fire and Rescue, released a statement justifying the suspension:
“The disciplinary process for the Atlanta Fire Rescue department is designed to encourage safety and order. It also seeks to establish clear expectations in both emergency and non-emergency situations.
At this time, it would be inappropriate to publicly discuss individual disciplinary cases that have not been totally resolved.”
While safety protocols are important to have, this isn’t some maverick that is in need of a power-check. Captain Dwyer was clearly adhering to his inner calling: helping someone in need.
It’s confusing times for first-responders – as this creates a conundrum of “damned if you do, damned if you don’t”.
In the meantime, a Florida officer who made national headlines in January after getting suspended for comments that his wife made on social media has been reinstated.
Town Manager J.C. Jimenez said that Bay Harbor Islands Police Department Cpl. Pablo Lima was restored to full duty Thursday after an investigation into the incident.
Lima had been suspended for “liking” his wife’s Facebook post where she referred to anti-American Congressman Rashida Tlaib as being a “Hamas-loving anti-Semite,” according to the Miami Herald.
Cpl. Pablo Lima, a former vice-president of the police union in Miami-Dade, was put on administrative leave pending an internal affairs investigation, according to town manager J.C. Jimenez.
“The content of the social media posts that were brought to our attention are not consistent with our Town’s values and policies,” Jimenez said in a statement.
Lima had applied to be the town’s next police chief on a Tuesday, and then the following Thursday after being asked about the Facebook posts by the Miami-Herald, the department opened an investigation and put him on leave.
“I further find that Corporal Lima was expressing his First Amendment rights showing support for his wife,” Lt. Curtis Johnson said in his decision.
The investigation was insane to begin with.
Someone posts a status on social media, who happens to be your wife. You “like” the post to support your wife’s right to her opinion.
Then ONE YEAR later a newspaper asks about it under questionable circumstances. And you get suspended for doing it? Ok.
Lima’s wife, Anabelle Lima-Taub serves as the city commissioner in Hallandale Beach, Florida, and is apparently considered a “controversial” figure in the city. Incidentally, Lima-Taub was born in Haifa, which is the third largest city in Israel.
Given the rhetoric that Tlaib has emanated since she got into public life continually berating Israel, one can hardly blame Lima-Taub for lighting her up on social media.
The Facebook post in question emanates from a post last year. Last January, a vote was held in Hallandale Beach to condemn her for Facebook posts targeting Tlaib, including calling her a Hamas-loving anti-Semite and said that she might be a “martyr and blow up Capitol Hill.”
The vote passed 3-2, but apparently held no weight. During the meeting, supporters showed up waving Israeli flags and holding signs in support of her statements. Lima-Taub refused to apologize for the posts, and in fact re-emphasized them in other posts.
“I am offended by anyone who is NOT OFFENDED by Rashida Tlaib’s hateful rhetoric and pro BDS and other radical dangerous views calling for the obliteration of Israel, literally off the face of the map,” she said in one post.
“I remain unapologetic for my views that she is a danger to the peace process and demand an apology of her for relabeling Israel as Palestine on a map hanging on her wall in her congressional office.”
Lima-Taub explained that her primary issue with Tlaib is her support of the BDS or Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement against Israel, which she feels is tantamount to supporting the terrorist organizations Hamas and Hezbollah.
Tlaib has a history of making anti-Israel comments. At one time when she was asked if she supported a one-state solution, she said:
“One state. It has to be one state. Separate but equal does not work. This whole idea of a two-state solution, it doesn’t work.”
Palestinian activists use the term “one-state solution” to refer to the replacement of Israel.
Tlaib told Britain’s Channel 4 that she would cut U.S. military aid to Israel.
“Absolutely, if it has something to do with inequality and not access to people having justice,” she said. “For me, US aid should be leverage. I will be using my position in Congress so that no country, not one, should be able to get aid from the US when they still promote that kind of injustice.”
Did you read that? “US aid should be leverage.” Are we not impeaching President Trump for doing something like that?
Here is where Cpl. Lima comes in. After the vote on his wife, she shared a news story on Facebook about the incident and had the audacity to like five comments that expressed support for his wife.
Those statements also contained “provocative” statements about Tlaib, with suggestions that she “took her [congressional] oath on the Koran,” “openly hates Jews” and that she “supports the people who flew planes into our [New York] twin towers and killed over 5,000 people.”
Tlaib is a pretty easy person to dislike. At a rally just after she was sworn into Congress, Tlaib, ever the class act in speaking about President Trump said, “we’re gonna impeach the mother*cker.” The absolute epitome of dignity and grace there, Tlaib.
So, Cpl. Lima liked the posts in support of his wife, and now finds himself suspended, even though he did not make any posts himself.
According to the Miami Herald, the Bay Harbor Islands police department prohibits any speech that “ridicules, maligns, disparages, or otherwise expresses bias against any gender, race, religion or any protected class of individuals,” even over social media.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) addressed the issue in a tweet under it’s “Islamophobia Watch.”
CAIR Islamophobia Watch: Rally held in support of officer suspended for supporting wife’s anti-Muslim comments on social media
Cpl. Pablo Lima was recently suspended for social media “likes” indicating support for anti-Muslim comments.https://t.co/WT3Z0V7gWL
— CAIR National (@CAIRNational) January 19, 2020
Apparently calling out Hamas, a group which Tlaib has supported, as a terrorist group can now get you in trouble with your employer.
The suspension is the least of Lima’s problems. Even with the exoneration, the incident will likely leave a black mark on his career, which has spanned nearly four decades. He was a candidate to take over as the next chief of the department.
“Throughout my 38 years of law enforcement experience my reputation has been impeccable!” he wrote. “I took the role (and still do!) of conducting myself ethically very seriously.”
Lima-Taub also wrote a long post supporting her husband on Facebook, supporting him in face of “corruption” in southern Florida, as well as the work of an unnamed lobbyist.
“Pablo knows that as an elected official, I am not at liberty to delete any comments affiliated with my political work,” she said.
“As he always does the right thing and he was liking comments that reiterated support of me not being a racist which he now is being punished and suspended for.
To my amazing and honorable, husband, Pablo Lima: I admire you, love you, support you and stand by your side.
When this matter concludes, I will work diligently to uncover the trails, which I am sure will lead to a lobbyist who brings nothing but misery and corruption to every South Florida city he touches!”
God forbid somebody insult a member of the “squad.” If it was President Trump who was insulted, Mr. Politically Correct city manager would probably have given Lima a bonus.