When the FDNY graduated 300 probationary firefighters yesterday the main focus fell on Joseph Cassano, the son of former FDNY Commissioner Sal Cassano. The extra attention paid to the recruit was centered on his alleged racist social media postings in 2013. Once the postings were made public Cassano resigned from his EMT job.
Even though Cassano apologized for his remarks against blacks and Jews stating, "These tasteless comments do not reflect the person my parents raised me to be," his acceptance into The Fire Academy on Randalls Island still raised a few eyebrows.
City Councilman Andy King said, "The FDNY has made a great many people in New York City unhappy and uneasy with the graduation of Joseph Cassano."
He added, "I am still in disagreement of Cassano's hiring and I can only hope that he will serve the people of New York City without any prejudice in his heart."
Outgoing FDNY Commissioner Daniel Nigro touted the FDNY's diversity stating, "People of color comprise 34% of the 300 graduating probationary firefighters, and five women are in the graduating class, which means more women than ever before are serving in the FDNY."
Some black probationary firefighters questioned at the graduation told the New York Post they take Cassano at his word and accepted his apology.
Photo Credit: Getty Images