Saturday, October 25, 2014

Ignorance kills another word

Journalists, TV anchors, and editorial writers are hard at work destroying another valuable word.

They are abetted by the badly educated doctors and scientists in charge of the so-called 'Ebola crisis.'

What word?  Protocol.

Dictionaries define the 1st meaning of protocol to be the forms of ceremony and etiquette observed by diplomats and heads of state.
The 2nd meaning is the first copy of a treaty or other document prior to its ratification.
The 3rd (and final) meaning is any preliminary draft or record of a transaction.

There is nothing in those meanings related to responding to  a dangerous disease or  wearing a hazmat suit.

The better word would be "procedures." 

What caused this post is the front page of today's issue of the Fort Lauderdale Sun Sentinel.  A color photograph is headlined "Airport team flies into action."
The photo shows three men in white hazmat suits surrounded by six firemen in varied stages of assistance with the suits.  The caption for the photgraph reads as follows:

"The Fort Lauderdale Fire Department demonstrates its protocols for handling Ebola patients who might arrive on an airplane."


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