Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Rich Gale Rightly Bows Out

State firefighter union president Rich Gale has correctly stepped down after it was disclosed he had used the "n-word" in reference to President-elect Barack Obama.

I took a class at the UW-Madison from William Appleman Williams, the great US historian who'd had an earlier career in the US Navy.

The context to the ancedote is lost to me, but Williams illustrated the clueless by saying that on board a ship, there was always someone who didn't get the word.

Somehow, Gale becomes the guy who didn't get the word about Obama, the campaign and the victory.

Firefighters are public employees. Their unions are diverse and the members work in close quarters with lives, including their own, on the line.

It's definitely an environment [actually, aren't all workplaces this way?) that abhors bigotry.

One of the lessons of the Obama phenomenon is that the times are a changin.'

Now Gale knows.


Mukwonago53149 said...

Why should anybody have to resign because of their views or opinions? You can argue that a racially charged comment is not freedom of speech and that it's simply just "hate" speech, but where do we draw the line?

If we don't stand up for people like Richard Gale, then we're standing up for the censoring of our words and thoughts.

James Rowen said...

You can have all the views or opinions you want, but you have to suffer the consequences when you air them publicly.

No one censored Rich Gale. He was not prevented from saying what he said. He's just paying a price.

Anonymous said...

Another liberal bites the dust. Good. No great loss. What business do public employees have forming unions anyway. Firefighters take an oath, they're going to go on strike?

"No one censored Rich Gale". Well, in effect they did, he lost his position and has been forced to resign from various groups and boards.Liberal Fascism at its best.