Reports from the state of Washington said that convict labor is being exploited to extinguish the wild blazes. States that have very high minimum wages for insiders also seem to have abundant cheap labor supply castes to do the dirty work.
In the modern American economy young men and women need computer skills and good lungs rather than damaged lungs, strained backs and even brain damage from excess smoke inhalation. It would be difficult to prove that fighting forest fires is an improvement for one’s health.
I would guess that not all of the young men (? a chauvinist selection) fighting the fires are violent criminal thugs that enjoy fighting fires and swigging good whiskey if they can. Some are probably non-violent drug offenders that might get crushed discs under the loads of heavy equipment or exhaust their health in futility regarding upward social mobility on southern style prison road gangs. Anything so politicians can get free work in their budgets; anything so a corrupt establishment can segregate themselves from non-paid and dangerous field work. People should be paid at least the highest minimum wage in the U.S.A. to extinguish the blazes, and the criminal convicts should be given reasonable job-training and not be trained to be involved in the fire-pyromaniac-firefighter cycle of combustion. If prisoners must go on field trips it should be as forced-laborers protecting wealthy homes from nature.
If one considers the environmental expansion of desertification and hot air that support wildfire increase as fueled by human global warming gasses, fire control to is reduced with the killing of wildlife and largest mass extinction in dozens of millions of years that is also human caused. With an abundance of wildlife the underbrush gets eaten and fires don’t start so quickly. Shoddy state game management practices work against the shifting ecosystem adaptation of wildlife to work with the biota in a way that reduces wildfire. It is also necessary to have large predators as natural health managers of the ungulate population and the way the wealthy expand housing developments and scoff at natural environmental law, the predatory managers are the first to be killed and stuffed. Really. it is all sort of creeping farce in progress over several dozens of years. It does make interesting news media reports though.