Waves of criticism are on the way

Published 12:00 am Thursday, September 8, 2005

Well, pull up a chair and get comfortable, pop some popcorn, put new batteries in the remote, sit back and be entertained, for the finger pointing has begun.

The critics have arrived!

And if you enjoy listening to criticism, you ought to be in hog heaven for the next few months.

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You should be shouting that great New Orleans saying “Laissez Les Bons Temps Rouler”. (Let the good times roll.)

And what a spectacular “critic” event that is being planned!

It should be as entertaining for you as any WWF Main Event.

A sort of steel-cage, no-holds barred, type match is being set up by the critics that will pit all parties against each other that have responsibilities to respond after a natural disaster.

All of the following-FEMA,

Homeland Security, the Red Cross, the Louisiana National Guard, the Louisiana Governor, the Mayor of New Orleans, and various Bush administration officials-are, (to mix some metaphors), on the hot-seat, under the spot-light, in the cross-hairs, and are being thrown to the lions.

Do not be overly disappointed, however, if you find others around you that do not share the same enthusiasm for quickly criticizing those that are out working in the hectic-ness of the fray.

Whether one is in government, business, church work, or any other organization that deals with people, legitimate criticism is important and has its rightful place and time.

After all, it was Churchill who once said “Criticism may not be agreeable but it is necessary.

It fulfills the same function as pain in the living body.

It calls attention to an unhealthy state of things.”

Don’t be overly quick, however, to cast the first stone of criticism, for I am also reminded of a quote from Dale Carnegie “Any fool can criticize, condemn, and complain…..and most fools do”.

When crisis come upon us, such as when Katrina hit our neighbors to the south, it is so much more refreshing to see the multitudes of caring hearts and helping hands that come to the forefront, than the biting tongues of criticism.

Abraham Lincoln, no stranger to criticism, said two things about criticism that I think are still wise for us today.

He said “He has a right to criticize, who has a heart to help”.

He also said “If my office were to pause to respond to every criticism leveled against it, then it might as well close for any other business”.

I have been encouraged by the many responses of you, my fellow Demopolites.

Many of you have opened your wallets, your church facilities, and your homes to those that have been hit by Katrina.

You have done this with no fanfare, with no other motive than you felt that it is the decent thing to do.

You have demonstrated “a heart to help”.

Now, who can criticize that?