Black Lives More Than Matter
Thank you for continuing to focus on the effects of racism and the impunity with which police and armed citizens kill African-Americans. However, there is a point that hasn’t attracted much attention: when our society discards or destroys black lives, whether through denial of voting rights, the school-to-jail pipeline, outright murder or the bias of the “justice” system that convicts, imprisons and executes blacks in numbers out of proportion to their percentage of the population; when “we” discard those black lives, we deprive our society of their intelligence, talent, skills, creativity, generosity, capacity for love—and genius. Our society needs all of those good qualities. Discarding them is not just criminal; it is incredibly foolish.
Sharing Is Creepy
What we see in Airbnb and Uber [“What the ‘Sharing Economy’ Takes” and “Uber the Job Destroyer,” Feb. 16] is evidence of a forage economy, where the vast majority pick through the wreckage of what was once prosperity. This, of course, is exactly what the phrase “creative disruption” actually means. The next step is the landfill.
new london, n.h.
In addition to the very good points Jon Liss makes in “Uber the Job Destroyer,” I don’t like Uber for another reason. It is moving in on an established service that is regulated, based on years of experience, to keep passengers safe and to ensure nondiscrimination. The Red Top cabs in Arlington, Virginia, have been my salvation on many trips to visit relatives there. I use a motorized wheelchair and don’t drive. In San Francisco, I rely on accessible vans to go places unreachable by public transit. There are regulations that require the fleets to make some of their vehicles accessible and require universal safety tie-downs for wheelchairs. The drivers are trained. Uber doesn’t or can’t provide anything equivalent.
There are three ways of organizing an economy: individually run, government-run or worker-run. Individually run is capitalism, both with benefits and flaws. Government-run hasn’t been all that successful. Worker-run (or -controlled) has been tried on a small scale with good results, as a general rule. Could it work on a national basis?