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Thursday, August 31, 2006


Fireman who wouldn't hand out leaflets at a 'Gay Pride' bash demoted; others cautioned and sent on 'diversity training.' Tricky one, it seems to me. On the one hand, obviously you pull people out of burning buildings whatover the nature of their lifestyle choices. (The peoples' choices, not the buildings. If it's a hideous '60s building, presumably you can make a judgement call to let it burn down once you've pulled the people out, no?) And telling people about fire safety, well, fair enough. But doesn't telling people about fire safety at a 'Gay Pride' whatsit imply that you approve of gay culture? And why is a 'Gay Pride' march a good place to do outreach about fire safety? What was the reasoning behind the plan to turn up and hand out fire safety leaflets? In any case, it does not look as if the relevant authorities were willing to countenance the firemen's opinions: 'Some of the firefighters involved had argued it would be embarrassing for them to turn up in uniform to the Pride Scotia event, while others claimed it would contradict their moral beliefs.' It's hard to make informed comment without access to more details of the case, but it looks awfie like further encroachment of the dictatorship of relativism. Surprise.
Meanwhile, bizarrely, while looking for (and failing to find) the Scotsman's take on the business, I found that the Lothian and Borders fire brigade has been having a recruitment drive in gay bars. I suppose they can have recruitment drives anywhere they like, but really, isn't it likely that there are better things to spend the money on? It's just a bit odd. Why not have recruitment drives in, oh, I don't know, pubs with live music ('we've found that the traditional music scene is woefully under-represented in the fire service')? Or cocktail bars on George Street ('it seems that rich students just aren't aware of the fire services as a career option')?