Time Magazine will be releasing its “Person of the Year” this week and I have seen the final eight selections. So whom would I nominate for this distinction? I decided there should be two types of folks as co-winners in my book.
After being out in west Texas and eastern New Mexico last week, flying over all the oil wells — I nominate the American energy worker. These are the men and women who truly do a tough dirty job in safely penetrating the earth in order to draw out the resources that allow us to flip a switch and fill up a gas tank.
The folks who tend to the oil, natural gas, and coal fields are truly representative of that rugged Americanism. They’re a breed unto themselves and a hearty bunch. We can never thank them enough for the long hours and sometimes adverse conditions in which they operate. They live in a transient manner going where they are needed. And as we see gasoline prices going down we must realize it’s not the politicians who should be slapping themselves on the back and taking credit. It’s the energy worker who are actually fighting hard against the the federal government’s policies to make America an energy leader. We must never forget it is because these stellar men and women do the drilling and all that is necessary to explore, recover, transport, and refine the resources to power and fuel our daily lives. Thanks folks!
And the other group, which should be acclaimed every day? Our local law enforcement officers, who right now are being targeted and vilified in some of the most hurtful ways.
Just as we take for granted when we turn on the light switch, we often take it for granted that we remain safe and secure. Just like our warriors deploy to maintain our external security, these men and women of the thin blue line take it up every day right here in our neighborhoods and streets to allow us to enjoy these freedoms and liberties which America provides.
I find it interesting that little is noted when a law enforcement officer is gunned down in the line of duty — sure, there’s a 3-minute news report — but how much after that? Who goes out and marches for them? They’re remembered in a memorial service, but then forgotten, save for those who knew them best and loved them most. Who interviews their families on TV? Yet, if there is ever a time when we find ourselves in a bit of a fix, somehow they show up. And at the end of the day, these blue-clad Spartans just check out, go home, love their families and friends, and prepare for the next day.
In my time here in South Florida I have had the cherished honor of getting to know these law enforcement officers and have become extremely close friends with some, like retired Pembroke Pines PD Sergeant Jim Gort and Palm Beach Sheriff Office Major Bobby Allen.
There are many others who deserve recognition, but these two groups of folks make an impact on our lives every day — and I think they shouldn’t just be on the cover of a magazine, but in our prayers every day.