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Thursday's letters

Thursday's letters

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Facebook broke us

Around 2007, when Facebook was in its first flush of success, founder Mark Zuckerberg settled on a mantra for his employees: “Move Fast and Break Things.”

And so they did. The problem is that they could not predict, no less control, what got broken.

Well, thank you Facebook! Here is a partial list of the things that you have broken or crippled:

  • Personal privacy.
  • Social interactions.
  • Public health.
  • Political discourse.
  • Democracy.

Only a company of tremendous ambition, and hubris, could amass such an impressive track record. And let’s not forget Facebook’s greatest triumph: the election of Donald Trump and the re-emergence of radical white supremacy.

In 2014, as Facebook was getting increasingly negative feedback (no likes!), Zuckerberg updated his mantra to “Move Fast with Stable Infra.” This is typical corporate gibberish, but the purpose was not to develop a new slogan, but rather to distract people from the conversation about Facebook’s utter disregard for the impacts that its programs have had on people and society.

Facebook needs to be regulated by the government and shunned by the rest of us.

Gary Kenton


The little guy

What a beautiful piece by Gwen Frisbie-Fulton in Sunday's Ideas section ("Hope for Hiatt," Nov. 14), written with compassion and hope for the residents of Hiatt Street mobile home park. She is jumping right in on the side of the little guy, as she calls it, because she knows from her own life how vital it is for these families to have those modest homes as an anchor for their lives.

Taking that all away for just one more condo complex should strike us all as mean and callous, the arrogance of wealth vs. everything standing in its way.

Just as Frisbie-Fulton has taken sides with courage, so can we in their struggle to buy that property and create a co-op of ownership — a landmark for a city with heart.

William Yaner


Hateful rhetoric

We're letting the wrong message proliferate and accepting at face value conspiracy theories and wrongful accusations.

Our nation used to pride itself on our educational superiority and competitive intellect with other nations. Now we're a nation of those whose ignorance reigns against any common sense. Our forefathers didn't expect this of us and we should not, either.

Let us make a thorough, complete education the basis of our country. Let's not sacrifice our intelligence for stupid rhetoric and sound bites.

You might continue to fester in your world of hatred and conspiracy theories and you may take them to your grave. Or you can join the real world of innovative thinking and move our nation toward a much brighter future for everyone.

Trish McDermott

Browns Summit

DMV logjam

I understand that the DMV is understaffed and not able to serve all walk-ins, but it's quite obvious that most of its problems are self-inflicted.

I have an expired Virginia license and am unable to transfer it online — something that, if changed, would make it easy for some customers to actually avoid coming to the DMV.

Also, North Carolina is one of three states in which you need insurance just for a license. I get why this is, but when 47 other states don't, it's no wonder North Carolina is the lesser-tier state.

The earliest available appointment was for Dec. 13. I had arrived at 9:30 a.m. in hopes of getting a walk-in and expected a long wait.

Having waited until 1 p.m., I asked whether I could be seen if some of the appointments canceled. I was told simply that "my boss says no walk-ins at all, for the rest of the day." One cancellation/no show should equal one walk-in; you can't say at 1 p.m. that there will be no more walk-ins for the day, as you don't know that there won't be cancellations.

I was ready to wait all day; unfortunately, they didn't want to work all day.

Greg Kuhn


A coup attempt

The democratic republic of the United States of America (the one we all have pledged allegiance to) is in the midst of a coup.

The intent of the coup is to replace the democratically elected government with an authoritarian regime headed by Donald Trump and his supporters. This coup is supported by virtually all elected officials in the Republican Party — officials who have sworn an oath to “support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic. ... ." Those members of Congress and state legislatures who do not publicly disavow this coup and its plotters (foremost Donald Trump) should resign or be recalled from office (for violation of their oath office).

Short of this, they should be voted out of office (or denied office) in November. If the Republican Party wishes to have a voice in the governance of our country, they must find candidates who will reaffirm their oath to defend and protect the Constitution.

William Dudley



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