‘Tilting at windmills’

Dear Editor:

Whilst I have to agree with the sentiments of Scott Stokes (Totalitarianism, March 25), I hardly think that simply pointing out the issues is enough.

Yes there is self silencing, random corporate interference, and an almost immovable chasm between right and left, but the only remedy, if indeed there is one, is identify the causes and propose solutions.

No doubt causing some indignance and insults, I would suggest three of the causes.

Donna McFarlane (What about balance, March 25) points to one: the 24/7 news networks need to fill time by moving away from just reporting news to manipulating facts and people to create specific points of views or, better yet, more controversy to gain audience.

Another is that the internet, billed as the greatest assist to mankind ever, has deteriorated into a social media that glorifies extremes and promotes controversy simply for the sake of building members, an arena where much of the data is suspect if not downright distorted, and a dark web that hides all manner of criminal and perverted goings on.

Also, our educators have forgotten their purpose. They spend so much time “preparing students for leading their lives” they don’t actually teach them much, on the basis that they can get the knowledge they might need from the internet.

And per the previous paragraph, what do they see when they get there?

They do not have the knowledge base to distinguish the good information from the bad, or the mental discipline (something rarely taught in any school these days) to stay away from the sensational and glean all the good that is in fact available on the internet if you are disciplined enough to find it.

Each of these can only be put right if “We the People”/“We the North” demand it. But how do we do that? I wish I were sufficiently brilliant to know.

But until we can all agree that something simply must be done to address the apathy and deficiencies in our society’s approach to honesty, truth and our collective needs, we are doomed to remain Don Quixotes tilting at windmills.   

Jim Taylor,