Now is not the time to criticize

Published 8:21 pm Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Unfortunately, it didn’t take long for us to forget we’re human beings. Unfortunately, the stopwatch we usually place on the time it takes for something bad to happen and placing blame upon someone was just not fast enough.

In fact, the rain was still falling, the streets were still flooding and the lives were still being ravaged by flood waters, when those who would rather cast blame about why such things were happening instead of lending a helping hand. What a shame.

Selma is a historic city, and an old city. And, as an old city it has problems and challenges that must be addressed. Unfortunately those challenges at times take far more money and time than can easily be placed. Such is the case with the drainage problems throughout each corner of Selma.

Email newsletter signup

What was even worse, those drainage challenges were exacerbated Monday and Tuesday by a series of rainstorms, and resulting flash flooding, that most in Selma had never seen. It was a historic rainfall that even the best of drainage systems could not have handled.

But instead of lending a helping hand to those in need, those who needed their house swept of water, those whose driveways were washed away by more than 10 inches of rain, there were those casing blame on why the drainage problems exist and chastising those in charge.

Yes, the drainage system in Selma is in need of attention. Gutters need to be cleaned out, storm drains need to be cleared and so on. We are sure such will be given close attention in the coming days and weeks, literally in the wake of these storms.

But instead of jumping to criticize, we should today thank those city crews who did what they can to continue to pick up trash and garbage as scheduled; we should thank the fire and police officials who braved the weather to help pull people from their flooding homes and pull out stalled cars; we should thank the crews from Alabama Power and Pioneer Electric who helped restore power to the thousands who were in the dark, and we should thank those who work with the Dallas County Emergency Management Authority, who helped track and respond to these storms.

There is an appropriate time to criticize those in charge, but that time is not today. Let’s make sure we take care of our neighbors before we waste one minute on something else.