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DC area students – spoiled by the government January 23, 2014

Posted by hslu in Global Affair.
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I took my wife to work because it was cold outside. The low today was around -1 degree Fahrenheit. In fact, I have taken her to work  for last two  days as well: We had about 3″ of snow the day before, Tuesday, although forecast called for 5″ to 8″ for the DC area. It was cold yesterday too. The low was in the single digit.

When I took my wife to work on Tuesday, the early morning traffic on Route 7 was very light because all Fairfax County schools were closed and people working for the Federal Government got a day off too.

Wednesday was the same: schools closed and Federal government shut down even though the roads were all cleared, at least in the area where I live.

This morning, Thursday, January 23, 2014, traffic picked up some on Route 7  when I took my wife to work around 6:30 AM. I guessed the Federal government finally opened up for business but I learned that all Fairfax County schools remained closed.

Back in 1989, my company sent me to work for our Canadian affiliate. I took my family along and we lived in Calgary for a year and half. Back then, our daughter was eight and our son was just 5. Both went to a school near by called Don Bosco. Calgary’s winter started in mid to late September and usually ended sometime in late March or early April. It got dark early in the winter and sun usually won’t come out until after seven in the morning. Snow would cover the ground and usually won’t melt until winter was over. Occasionally we had Chinook but that was not the norm. When we were there, temperature in the winter usually stayed below freezing and that was on on a good day. Like clock work, we always got several weeks when temperature would drop below the zero degree mark and stayed there for days or even weeks at a time. Wind would blow from the northwest and the snow fall of 3″ to 12″ were fairly common. In fact, I had to run 100′ long extension cord to my car outside just to warm the engine up so that it would start in the morning. You see, the townhouse we rented had no garage and our car was parked on the street.

Yet, I do not remember Don Bosco was ever closed because snow was too heavy or temperature was too low. Our office in downtown Calgary and the Calgary government were never closed in the winter. People dealt with the snow using steel chains on their car tires and heater on their car’s engine block. Everyone dressed in layers of cloth and used ski mask to deal with wind and frigid temperature. The city government prepared for it to the extend city budget allowed it to. Kids prepared for the winter too even though their noses would turn pink after exposing to the cold temperature for too long.

Well, students in the DC area are a different breed. Many parents of these students directly and indirectly work for the federal government. A high percentage of them are probably liberals. Fairfax and Loundon counties are among the richest counties in the US. The Fairfax county where I reside, is probably afraid of lawsuits from these rich parents in case their kids fell in the snow or tripped on ice covered side walks. As such, the schools around the DC area were closed for three days straight this time around because snow came. Workers for the federal government got two days off, probably on our expense. Well, I take that back, in theory they should work for us, the tax payers. But it never works out that way.

Hmm…, pretty good deal for federal government employees: easy jobs, don’t produce anything, good salaries, excellent benefits, no threat of layoffs and days off when it snows and/or when it is cold outside. We the tax payers have to work for a living and pay our taxes to support federal government employees. We call jobs like these:’铁饭碗,“ a rice bowl made of steel.

When it is cold outside or when there is a threat of snow, be it 1″, 2″ or more, students in the DC area get to stay home with heaters on at full blast. The government doesn’t want them exposed to the cold temperature. They are too precious to face the wrath from the mother natural.

All I can say is this:“温室中的花朵,凋谢的早.” Competition against students from other countries? America will deal with that when there is no threat of snow or when it is warm outside.

Question: Do students of International Falls, Minnesota get to skip school when it snows or when temperature drops to the single digit in winter?

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