Thursday, March 20, 2008

Credit to the Professionals

The formula isn’t unique to Durham. A crisis evolves. The news media amplify it.

In the case of the drought, it is incredible how many hyper-critical "water management experts" surfaced, wringing hands, launching zingers, second-guessing professionals.

Normal these days, I guess, but a huge waste of energy and very disruptive and confusing.

It is a free country with free speech, so anyone can be an expert at anything, and with the Internet, there are a lot of instant, self-proclaimed experts. But don’t you think there should be a responsibility to openly admit error? An apology is due now to retired director Terry Roland and the professionals who manage Durham’s water supply.

Months ago, when it was popular to fret that “the sky is falling,” Terry calmly predicted Durham’s reservoirs would refill by April. He was right on target.

The drought may or may not be over. While entertainment for some, I can’t help but wonder if there is a significant cost to our lack of restraint... as well as the toll it takes on professionals.

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