Brian Rice, the President of the California Professional Firefighters, responded on Saturday to Donald Trump’s disgusting tweet that came shortly after he declared the fires in the expansive western state a federal emergency. Speaking as though he was annoyed that he’d had to declare the emergency, Trump issued an unveiled threat to the state and its residents when he told them the fires were their fault and that if they didn’t “remedy” the situation, the US government would cut off aid.
There is no reason for these massive, deadly and costly forest fires in California except that forest management is so poor. Billions of dollars are given each year, with so many lives lost, all because of gross mismanagement of the forests. Remedy now, or no more Fed payments!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 10, 2018
Trump continued his line of reasoning well into Sunday, despite having undoubtedly been informed by then that half the forest land in California is actually managed by the federal government and is therefore his responsibility, that he’s already cut aid to California which exacerbated responses to the current fires, and that these fires are actually in “urban interface” areas, not forests, in the first place:
With proper Forest Management, we can stop the devastation constantly going on in California. Get Smart!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 11, 2018
Rice was having none of it, however:
The president’s message attacking California and threatening to withhold aid to the victims of the cataclysmic fires is Ill-informed, ill-timed and demeaning to those who are suffering as well as the men and women on the front lines. At a time when our every effort should be focused on vanquishing the destructive fires and helping the victims, the president has chosen instead to issue an uninformed political threat aimed squarely at the innocent victims of these cataclysmic fires.”
The Firefighters President had even more to say to the Hollywood Reporter:
At this moment, thousands of our brother and sister firefighters are putting their lives on the line to protect the lives and property of thousands. Some of them are doing so even as their own homes lay in ruins. In my view, this shameful attack on California is an attack on all our courageous men and women on the front lines.”
Imagine if you were a victim of the fires and woke up in a shelter, unsure if you even had a home to go back to, missing your family pets, worried about your neighbors, and the first thing you saw from the President of the United States was a tweet blaming you — since you elect the officials who oversee this stuff — for your own life being destroyed.
Featured image via screen capture