Monday, November 17, 2008

Girl Power !!

Friday, November 14, 2008

This is Me !

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Letting Go

The alarm tones sounded on my radio, with a message that there was a medical emergency in my building, and on my floor. Without accurate location information provided, I began walking around the cubicles and offices, orange vest on, looking for someone that needed help.

I was greeted by two people in a cube; one woman on the phone, looking very upset, and another standing by her. The bystander asked if I was the ERT. When I responded yes, she informed me that there had been a mistake. All they wanted, she explained, was someone to open the door to the office, where the other woman's purse was currently locked in.

The woman on the phone then piped up, with a terrified look on her face, "I don't want any help ! I'm five month's pregnant with twins, and I'm bleeding, but I just want to get my purse and go to the doctor !"

"Ma'am, I'm an EMT, I can help you."

"I don't want your help ! I need to get my purse, and go to my own doctor. Get out !"
(associated hand motion)

"Ok, I will respect your wishes."

I retreated from the cube, and called our dispatch center, asking what to do.

By law, I cannot touch or treat someone that has refused my care. If I were to go against her wishes, I would be guilty of battery. But at the same time, this woman's current condition meant that her babies were possibly in danger. And although she refused treatment from me, the fire department was already on its way.

The dispatch center advised me that they were required to dispatch the fire department, and that the patient could sign their waiver and be on her way. Although Dispatch had noted her objection, it would be a legal and liability issue for the company had they not summoned medical help given her condition.

I relayed this to the patient's friend, apologizing profusely that it was out of my control, but that in interest of their privacy, I had asked some Security officers and fellow ERT members to block off foot traffic around the area.

The friend told the patient, who then proceeded to bolt out of her cube and run down the stairs.

I watched incredulously as a security officer followed her, however she was determined to escape the situation. She got into a car (presumably her husband's), and they drove off.

I stood there, in disbelief, with an overwhelming feeling of helplessness.

I know rationally that there was nothing I could do, and that the patient's wishes are to be respected at all times. However, I couldn't help but feel some guilt for honestly and truthfully explaining the situation to the friend. While I was very pointedly reassured that I did nothing wrong, I could not stop myself from feeling helpless and worried for the patient and her unborn babies.

The patient was having a medical emergency, that had the potential to affect the survival of her twins. And there was not a damn thing I could do about it.

Such is the life of a volunteer, I suppose.

I was notified later on that she and the babies were fine.

Knowing that, I am fine now, too.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Equality for All

Rakesh posted this on his blog, but I just have to repost it because it's so poignant.

I hope that someday soon, we as a country can offer the same equality to the GBLT community. With the passage of Prop 8, we still have hurdles to overcome. But I have not lost hope that someday, this country will look beyond its bigotry and prejudice, and truly offer equality for all, regardless of race or sexual orientation.

Then, and only then, can we say that all people are created equal, in this great country of ours.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

"Teachable Moment" My Ass

Congratulations, Liz Jaroflow. You, as a representative of your San Francisco school, have successfully ruined any chance of any state in this country allowing gays and lesbians to legally marry one another.

Your ill-advised, so-called "Teachable Moment", taking your first-grade students to their teacher's lesbian wedding, was the catalyst for the Proposition 8 campaign, banning same-sex marriage. And it passed. Because of you.

The religious fanatics had no real ammunition against same-sex marriage, aside from their doctrines, until you pulled this stupid stunt. Many voters who were undecided; who may have voted to live and let live, and to allow those in same-sex relationships to legally solidify their unions, were swayed towards the Yes vote, because of this incident.

And now, this state and this country has entered a new era of discrimination and unfair treatment, setting our society back several decades in the process, by launching an inevitable chain reaction of constitutional bans on legal unions between two people who love each other, and who just happen to be gay.

Our state -- and soon, our country -- will join in this effort to legalize this reprehensible discrimination against those in loving, committed same-sex relationships.

All of this happened, Liz Jaroflow, because of you.

I hope you're proud of yourself.
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