It depends on what needs doing.
I prefer a .357 Magnum or .45 ACP chambered handgun for my own personal defense, but .38 Special with flat fronted bullets at 'normal' velocities do a pretty good job.
If one can hit properly.
One of the early posters mentioned many police departments carried .38 Special revolvers 'too long' when villains with other handguns showed up. What is not mentioned is the departments who didn't 'update' didn't do a whole lot to teach cops to shoot properly, either. A .38 Special revolver - either a K frame or J frame - can be shot with extreme accuracy if the shooter puts out the effort to learn to shoot.
Okay, I would not choose a .38 Special revolver as a primary hunting weapon for animals larger than white tail deer. (Frankly, they're on the bottom end for white tail.) Grizzly bear and other dangerous game are out. However, for general use, including self and home defense, a .38 Special revolver loaded with full charge or +p ammo and proper shaped bullets will do nicely.