I have been asked a couple times why I am being so vocal about the Pepsi Pups mess.
“Didn’t you withdraw from this program back in August? What does this have to do with you anymore?”
Back in July (yes, it has been that long) when Jimmy and I first started trying to get straight answers from anyone, we were basically told “Sit down and shut up. It’s a free dog.”
Nothing was adding up. The more we looked, the more confused we became.
“Do you know service dogs usually cost $15,000? You are getting a free dog. Sit down and shut up.”
We looked even more. We talked even more. We realized that this was a bad situation. A scary situation. A situation in which children could be hurt.
No one would listen to us.
Yes, we need a safe, trained service dog. Yes we desperately wanted a free service dog as promised.
Imagine with me:
In an economy of 80% unemployment, you land a job. IT”S A JOB! You have a job! It’s the most amazing thing ever! Finally, you can take a breath, and know that all is well. You have a paycheck coming!
First day on the job, a toaster drops out of no where and lands on your head.
Damn. What just happened?
You look around. All your co-workers are standing back up, brushing toast crumbs off themselves and sitting back at their desks.
You ask the girl next to you “Did you just get hit with a toaster?” She answers, “Yes, but sit down and ignore it. We are just lucky to have a job.”
You keep going to work each day. You keep getting hit with a toaster.
You talk with the upper management. You talk with the owners. You are told “Sit down and shut up. Do you realize how lucky you are to even have a job?”
You get to know your co-workers. They are wonderful people in desperate situations. The NEED this job just as much as you do. They need it to the point that they are willing to ignore that they keep getting hit with toasters.
You know getting hit with toasters every day is wrong.
“Sit down and shut up.”
One morning you can’t take getting hit with another toaster. What can you do to draw attention to the fact that this is not how it is at other workplaces? Talking to higher ups hasn’t worked. Your co-workers are scared to lose their job.
You quit your job. Who in their right mind would quit a job when it is so desperately needed? Someone who was frantically trying to show that something is wrong. Someone who wants to save their co-workers. Someone who wants to draw attention to how wrong it is at this place of employment. Someone who when they tried to draw attention when they worked there was told “Well, it can’t be that bad, you ALL are still working there. So sit down and shut up.”
Jimmy and I withdrew Faith from this program because we felt it would have the greatest impact. Who the hell gives up a free service dog that normally costs $15,000?
Someone who was desparatly trying to make people see that this was messed up.
Do I want a service dog for my daughter? Oh hell yes.
Do I feel like I am still part of the Pepsi Pups families? Oh hell yes.