Readers Write: Let’s keep online moderation tools in hands of businesses

PHIL SKINNER / PSKINNER@AJC.COM editor’s note: CQ.
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PHIL SKINNER / PSKINNER@AJC.COM editor’s note: CQ.

Let’s keep online moderation tools in hands of businesses

There’s no doubt that COVID-19 challenged millions of small businesses. But the impact would have been considerably worse if not for technology. This should guide policymakers as debate picks up on technology issues, particularly discussions around how online platforms moderate their content.

No one would argue that misinformation needs to be addressed, or that hateful speech should be removed from platforms. But any steps toward addressing the process of content moderation must take into account that the current internet landscape has allowed businesses to survive.

When COVID restrictions made in-person commerce impossible this past year, business owners like me leveraged social media and other online platforms to reach new and existing customers. Rather than disrupting the online landscape, we hope to see an approach to content moderation that keeps much-needed online tools in the hands of local businesses as we work toward a return to normal.

DANIEL HALPERN, CEO AND CO-FOUNDER, JACKMONT HOSPITALITY

GOP using tricks to deny the will of voters

It is well known that a large majority of Americans want the voting reforms offered by the For the People Act. Making sure everyone has ballot access, ending partisan gerrymandering, and exposing the sources of the flood of dark money in campaigns, are the among the most popular reform issues.

But they will never see the light of day thanks to the Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. Senate Republicans polled the populace and found that no amount of speechifying, advertising or sympathetic punditry would sway the American people, so they simply decided to use parliamentary tricks like the filibuster to deny the will of the voters. It doesn’t get more cynical than that.

JON SINTON, MARIETTA

Sending troops to border is not grandstanding

Recently, a reader wrote in about the situation on our southern border (”Sending troops to border is pure grandstanding,” Readers Write, July 8). His message was that sending troops to the border is “pure grandstanding”. The reader goes on to say that the current administration is handling the situation with the proper perspective. I would agree with the reader that we do not have a working, effective immigration plan. However, I must disagree with the idea that the Biden administration is working hard to solve the problem. I cannot recall anything that has been done by them to curtail the influx of illegal immigrants. In fact, the problems get worse every day.

Just recently, three convicted felons were arrested trying to enter. Adding to the problem is the increasing number of illegals testing positive for the virus.

The large number of people crossing the border has put additional work on the backs of our border control people. Since the federal government does not want to offer immediate help, several states have stepped up.

If this is grandstanding, then so is the ongoing effort to rescue people in southern Florida where both states and even foreign governments have offered help.

NEIL LANG, TYRONE

U.S. should provide supportive role for Cuba

The protests in Cuba are a perfect opportunity for this country to play a supportive role for positive change in that country without using the heavy handed parental-colonial approach that has gotten us nothing but trouble up to now.

Thinking of Vietnam, Panama, Iraq and Afghanistan, to name just a few examples. There is no doubt, we can support the people of Cuba to change their destiny on their own and on their own terms.

Viva Cuba Libre!

RODGER BURGESS, ATLANTA