"It's not my dog, Man."
Take a dead dog, cover it in lye, and it will go away. Except its tail is sticking out. It's still visible.
And nothing has been more visible in the past week than the ineptitude of three major government agencies in simply removing a dead dog lying just outside the Charlotte Amalie High School campus.
What could better and more shamefully illustrate the attitude of our public officials? Whatever happened to pride? To a sense of community? Or, forgoing all else, a concern about simple sanitation? It's not my job.
Monday the dog lay rotting outside the CAHS art department rooms, apparently having died there Sunday. An art teacher reported it to his principal.
Tuesday morning, having received no satisfaction, the teacher called a radio talk show. The Source promptly did a story, reporting that the Department of Education said it had contacted the Health Department's Division of Environmental Health and it "was being taken care of." A call to Environmental Health late Tuesday revealed they "had nobody to send," and prompted a suggestion that the Public Works Department be called. That department's representative said, "It's not our job."
Lo and behold, it's Wednesday. The dog is still there, emblazoned by two large signs stating, "Dead Dog Day 4." The art teacher explained he had to move his classes to the auditorium because of the foul smell.
A call Wednesday to Environmental Health revealed that Director Ethyln Joseph was going to get Public Works to remove the animal. She said her division had given Public Works a truck for that purpose. She was quite indignant about Tuesday's Source account of her division's response. She said she was calling Public Works to get some action.
Joseph said she had been contacted by Louis Hill, St. Thomas-Water Island administrator, after the Department of Education contacted him. When Hill was contacted Wednesday and told the dog was still there, he was aghast. On Tuesday he had spoken to Public Works Commissioner Wayne Callwood's secretary. Hill then spoke to Callwood personally and reported the commissioner was "aware" of the situation and would take care of it. Hill appeared acutely embarrassed and offered an apology to the public. The dog was finally removed late Wednesday by the Public Works Department.
Well, how many departments does it take to screw in a light bulb? We shudder to think.
DEAD DOG RAISES STINK IN OFFICIALDOM
"It's not my dog, Man."
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