Threat to democ­racy

The Timaru Herald - - COMMENT&OPINION -

While sit­ting here in the Queen­stown air­port I have just fin­ished read­ing the ar­ti­cle ‘‘How IT Threat­ens Democ­racy’’ by Kofi An­nan, which you pub­lished on Fe­bru­ary 21. The ar­ti­cle rang true to me.

I en­cour­age your read­ers to con­sider a read of a book by Wal­ter Lipp­mann pub­lished in 1922: ‘‘Pub­lic Opin­ion’’.

Lipp­mann writes with great clar­ity about how - in that preIn­ter­net era - pub­lic opin­ion is formed and ma­nip­u­lated.

Aware­ness of just how we form our opin­ions and how that process is used by oth­ers for their pur­pose is some­thing I think should be de­vel­oped in all cit­i­zens of democ­ra­cies.

I am a US cit­i­zen who has fallen in love with New Zealand and now feel pro­tec­tive about the coun­try. Learn from our mis­takes. Per Walt Kelly (my favourite car­toon­ist-philoso­pher): ‘‘We have met the en­emy and he is us.’’ James A Klun Colum­bus, Ohio the lady that was back­ing into it. This man had the cheek to do a u-turn, go nose into the park as the lady was back­ing into it. She had her in­di­ca­tor on as well to show that she was go­ing to park.

What he did is just not on in my opin­ion. Does he not know the road rules at all? I sug­gest he goes and does a de­fen­sive driv­ing course or some­thing like read his road code.

I even wound down my pas­sen­ger side win­dow and told him he was a cheeky beg­gar. That poor lady had to go fur­ther up the street to get a park.

If there had been an ac­ci­dent through him get­ting into this park while the lady was mov­ing in, which she was, he would have been at fault.

If I had the chance I would have taken his car plate num­ber and given it to the po­lice.

The other thing I would like to say that what this man cer­tainly wasn’t driv­ing safely.

Our roads are for ev­ery­one and we all should drive safely and look out for or watch out for oth­ers. Do not be fright­ened to give the Po­lice the car num­ber­plates of those who do wrong on our roads. Mary Rose Grant


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