Sunday, March 03, 2002

Frank Serpico asks that those who uncover corruption within government be referred to as lamplighters rather than whistleblowers, in a speech given before the Paul Revere Forum on February 27, 2002.
Revere lit or arranged for the lamps to be lit and hung high in the tower. He was a lamp lighter and that is the term I much prefer than whistle-blower. LAMPLIGHTER. We can still holler and shout but we have to light the lamps that shed the light on corruption, injustice, ineptitude and abuse of power. When we do, you will see the villains scurry into the woodwork the way roaches do when you turn on the light. Some of you are fortunate enough never to have witnessed roaches and poverty. However, they do exist feeding off the crumbs of the poor. We may be told "don't make so much noise" and we can reply, "you'll soon hear noise enough before long," and we may be arrested as Revere was.

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