Last night on the Ed Show I was introduced to a story about a city in our nation that is in crisis. The city is Detroit and apparently for the last year Detroit has become literally a warzone. There are fires nightly literally occurring every night for weeks at a time, very often first responders having to respond to 10 fires in a single night. Times where firemen having just doused one blaze then to see another start up blocks away. These brave men and women fighting to save a town that America has all but written off it seems.
There are thousands of thousands of vacant homes, businesses, and other property in Detroit. Unique in how hard they have been hit by the economic down turn the city is now facing this epidemic of arson and catastrophe. There are hundreds of situations where a family might be the only one occupying a block, one home in many. This is why the department like the brave ones at Engine Company 50 fight on, this is why they respond tirelessly, to ensure the safety of that one family.
And these people are under attack. The city, like so many others in our nation, is faced with a budget crisis of monumental proportions and as such the many city services are suffering, namely one is the Detroit Fire Department and its many station houses. The brave men and women of the Detroit Fire Department have suffered years of declining funding and neglect which has to led to descriptions of conditions at the stations as horrific, unsanitary, and not safe and their equipment in disrepair as well, literally being held together with duct tape at times. Yet, day in and day out as politicians argue about funding and what spending is important, these men and women soldier on, if you call 911 in Detroit they will show up regardless.
Its shameful and we all should be ashamed this happens in our nation. When people like Romney speak of less fire fighters, as Ed stated last night they would gladly let Detroit burn to the ground. Thankfully more people awakening to the problems of Detroit. Many more eyes will hopefully begin shine light on this issue.
There is a documentary that premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival recently called Burn : one year on the front lines of the battle to save Detroit. Here is the preview.
Pretty powerful looking it appears, as it won the peoples choice for best documentary. The film also helped bestow a 25k grant to the department to hopefully allow them to make much needed repairs and purchase equipment they so desperately need. However the fight is only just beginning. The movie is championed by executive producer Dennis Leary and still has to make wide release funding. You can visit the site here to find out more about the movie.
Because this is it folks, this is the GOP vision of America. They would gladly cut public services, critical ones like police, fire, and education just so they could see it burn. They gleefully dance on playing the fiddle while American burns when all it would take to drag ourselves out of this economic hole we find ourselves is to invest invest invest. Detroit is not lost, but if we continue on this roadway of austerity driven measures the GOP wants, it could be lost. And your town could turn into another Detroit as companies like Bain ship your jobs elsewhere.
I don't know about you, but I'm tired of dancing to their tune. Come November I plan to take that damn fiddle from their hands and break it over my knee.