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From the Jumpseat: The Safety/Identity Conflict

By Mark J. CotterOutsiders see things that insiders cannot or will not see. We have all heard the usual praise from citizens about how much they appreciate and admire the fire service and its members for the work we do. Often, these statements are made in general terms, somewhat like extolling the virtues of a democratic society and nutritious food. Other times, usually more passionately, they are an outpouring of gratitude and relief in response to a particular incident that firefighters helped to bring under control. We have become accustomed to, though no less appreciative of, those compliments. On the other hand, I have been repeatedly taken aback when persons who are not fi...

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