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News Clash

FDNY: White Firefighter From Iconic 9/11 Photo Is Kicked Off Of Color Guard… Sues For Racial Bias

They pulled a firefighter in that famous 9/11 photo from that role because they wanted an ‘all-black’ color guard.

Lt. Daniel McWilliams, who is white, was bumped from the color guard precisely because of the color of his skin. How surprised would you really be to learn that the ‘diversity officer’ has no problem with McWilliams getting bumped in favor of someone who would make the color guard entirely comprised of black firefighters?

Can you even IMAGINE the uproar if someone requested an all-white color guard?

Let’s take a look at what happened.

An FDNY diversity official has said that it’s ‘most definitely’ acceptable to keep a white firefighter off a ceremonial color guard so the flag bearers could all be black, according to a new report.

White firefighter Lt. Daniel McWilliams filed a lawsuit claiming racial bias after he was removed from a flag-bearing unit at a November 2017 memorial mass honoring deceased members of the Vulcan Society, a fraternal society of black firefighters.

And FDNY’s chief diversity and inclusion officer, lawyer Cecilia Loving, has defended the decision at a New York state Division of Human Rights trial, The New York Post reports.

McWilliams was one of the three FDNY firefighters seen in an iconic photo as they hoist the American flag at Ground Zero in the days after the 9/11 attacks.

According to McWilliams’ complaint, he been selected by the FDNY Ceremonial Unit to serve as one of the flag bearers in the color guard at the memorial service.

Being a flag bearer at the event was an ‘esteemed honor and privilege’ for McWilliams, according to his lawsuit, CNN reported.

Upon his arrival at the event, however, McWilliams was barred from participating in the color guard by then-Vulcan Society president Regina Wilson because she allegedly had asked for an all-black color guard at the mass.

…McWilliams claimed in his suit that he asked Wilson if she was removing him from the color guard because he’s not black. She confirmed that was the case, he said.

…McWilliams claimed he left the memorial ‘to save himself from further shame, humiliation and embarrassment,’ as their exchange was overheard by friends and colleagues, the New York Daily News reported.

During her trial testimony, McWilliams’ lawyer, Keith Sullivan, asked Loving – who is black – ‘So, a request for an all-black color guard is not discriminatory?’

‘No, it isn’t,’ Loving said, according to the New York Post.

Sullivan also asked Loving if it’s OK to request an all-black color guard, to which she was quoted as saying, ‘Most definitely.’

By way of explanation, Loving said that it was OK to swap out a white person for a black person to ‘uplift our identities and our separate ethnicities in order to instill a sense of pride and community and support for one another.’ —DailyMail

So, what do you think?

Based on what we’ve read so far, do you think he should win his suit, or is it now ok to specifically exclude white people from honors… AFTER they have already been given out?

Wes Walker

Wes Walker is the author of "Blueprint For a Government that Doesn't Suck". He has been lighting up since its inception in July of 2012. Follow on twitter: @Republicanuck