The Limitations of Computers
By Bob Branco
The computer is a fascinating tool. I think most of us would agree that it makes life much easier. Without my computer, it would be much more difficult for me to publish my own magazine and do other practical things. As great as the computer is, society is taking it for granted. It’s getting to the point where all of our problems have to be resolved by going on the internet. If you want to apply for a job, you almost always have to go on line to fill out an application. If you wish to do banking, most of it is now performed on line. There is shopping on line, dating on line, and the registration of your motor vehicle on line. I recently heard a rumor that the Government may no longer send letters in the mail informing us of our cost of living adjustments, that instead, we will be informed on line. This can’t happen. Computers are not invincible. Therefore paper correspondence can not go away!
For every ten times I ask someone for advice, I am asked 9 times to get the answers on line. Well, I don’t always want to solve my problems on line. I’d like personal satisfaction. I won’t even mention the fact that some web sites are challenging for the blind due to their graphic orientation, because that’s a subject for another day.
Many people, especially the elderly, do not own a computer because they either can’t operate one or don’t want to learn how to use one, which is their right. Sometimes you can’t teach an old dog new tricks, as the saying goes. To me, it’s a sin if you deny those of us who don’t own a computer the right to receive regular paperwork in the mail, whether it’s for social security information, prescription drug information, job information, and any other important correspondence that we need to deal with during our lives. If someone helps you with your paperwork, you have the convenience of establishing a dialog with that person if there are any questions.
The post office is designed to serve everyone, but not everyone has a computer. I’m sure you heard of the slogan for mail carriers which tells us that they work through rain, snow, and all other types of weather. Do they tell us that we need to use the computer come Hell or high water? No, that’s ridiculous. Though the computer may become a necessity, it is still considered a luxury for many people, whereas the post office is totally necessary.
I heard that there is a movement against the Government’s attempts to terminate the mailing of Social Security correspondence. I would like to join that movement, and I hope you do, too.