Hectic stuff has kept me from my blog for several days, but here's a few things I'm thinking about this week. I'll just consider this four posts in one.
Once again, a residential fire that displaces many, puts the residents and firefighters at risk, and results in major property damage proves to be the result of careless smoking. This is getting old, and I haven't even noted all of these cases on my blog. I continue to believe that one of the significant factors in the declining rate of residential fires per capita in the United States is the smoking rates, which demonstrate a very similar trend.
I'm teaching police recruits this week in the academy, my standard course on information resources. This is a class of six; three men and three women. They have interesting and diverse backgrounds and experiences. My time with new firefighters, dispatchers, and police officers is always enjoyable to me. I had to take a phone call during class, about the upcoming appearance in our little town of Skrillex. The recruits were all about to bust a gut listening to my end of the conversation, as I attempted to pronounce the name. After the call ended I informed them that I am even worse at country western artists that I am at electronica/dubstep (whatever that means.)
This week's tragic fatal crash involving a motorcycle is the fourth this year. It is so sad to have a young person taken from this earth as life is just unfolding. What more can we do to reduce such collisions, arising when a vehicle executes a left turn in front of an oncoming motorcycle? A motorcycle involved in a right angle collision always loses, as did I at 24th & Holdrege on my police Harley Davidson 39 years ago, luckily with injuries that were not life-threatening.
The angst of Lincoln's Yazidis was evident on this week. Just a couple of days after the 9/11, a contingent of leaders in Lincoln's small Yazidi community came to see me, to explain that although they were from Iraq, they were not terrorists. It was quite moving, as they explained some of the history of repression their culture and religion has endured. I did some research and reading afterwards, and had a better understanding of their anxiety about whether they could be caught up in a backlash of anger arising from acts they had no responsibility for whatsoever.