We are now in an unprecedented time. Americans, and the world, are fighting an unseen enemy. We are at war with an invisible adversary that we cannot simply drop a bomb on or send an infantry unit to face.
You, and others, will compare it to many events in history where humans, and more importantly, Americans, have adapted and overcome challenges. We have faced killer viruses in the past, which were faced and defeated.
This enemy is killing by the tens of thousands and has the potential to wipe out millions, before we gain ground on it. And we will gain ground. The United States government, as well as the American private sector, is at the forefront of confronting this opponent.
Equally important: American First Responders are at the forefront of this fight. Police, fire, EMS, medical personal, dispatchers, corrections officers and the military are dealing with this every day, on every shift.
We cannot simply stay home.
We cannot isolate ourselves from the world as we wish we could. We must go to work. We are mandated to show up and sworn to carry out our duties with all our might: protecting our communities.
Now, there are some others out there doing this as well. There are various store employees whose businesses are still open: pharmacists, truckers, grocery store checkout clerks, food service industry workers, and others. Those of us who did ‘sign up’ for our professions knew we could and, most likely would, face danger at some point in our careers. I’ll get back to that in a minute.
Those non-first responder professions whom I just spoke of probably never thought they would be put in a position that they may contract a virus. It’s a virus that could kill them because their jobs became ‘essential’ overnight. They reported to work when almost all others are ordered to shut down, self-isolate and stay home.
These people need to be applauded and recognized for their courage.
They are the ‘behind-the-scenes’ population who are keeping us going. They are part of a driving force that has carried this country on their collective backs. They deserve to stand up and be recognized.
To them, I say THANK YOU.
Okay, now for the first responders. I have had several discussions with officers from multiple agencies. I have heard varying opinions on ‘what we deserve.’ Some of the guys are saying that we should be paid more because the government is shutting down most of the general public.
The argument is that we still must go to work so we should be paid more. Alright, if you can convince the powers that be to pay me more, I will not refuse it, but neither will I ask for it! I know this is where the debate will start.
I knew when I took this job that I would be put in harm’s way every time I put on my uniform. None of us saw this type of pandemic coming when we took the job, but we didn’t come in with blinders on, either. We all knew there would be hazards. What those hazards would be were yet to be seen – until now. This is another test of our resolve, and it is one we will pass.
This current test of our mettle will further prove that we are stronger than any foe that stands before us.
Parting Thoughts …
This isn’t the time for those on the front line to turn around with our hands out. Those hands should be extended forward to those in need of our help.
That’s how this works, plain and simple.
Let’s not lose focus on our purpose and the reason we all chose, or were chosen, for our mission in life. God bless you all.
“Above all, it’s about going home at the end of the shift … “
We couldn’t agree more.
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