Editorials

Our government is here with your mandatory smartphone

About 40 percent of seniors are not online compared to less than 1 percent of millennials. The digital divide is also wide among those in rural areas and those who dropped out of high school.
About 40 percent of seniors are not online compared to less than 1 percent of millennials. The digital divide is also wide among those in rural areas and those who dropped out of high school. AP

So you ain’t on that new-fangled contraption whut Al Gore done gived us? What, are ya old, or country, or stupid or sumpthin’?

Apparently.

A new study by the Pew Research Center show that the greatest digital divide is age. More than 40 percent of seniors are not online. Among millennials, only 1 percent are offline.

More than one in four rural residents are not online. If you are among those who didn’t finish high school, more than one in three of you are offline.

The government cares, because the older you get the more government programs you use. It is much easier for them to serve you if they can deal with you online instead of in person, on the phone or by mail. If you are unemployed, you are more likely to find a job using online resources.

Both Hillary and The Donald promise to expand broadband opportunities to get people connected to the Internet. Resistance is futile. You will be assimilated.

Yet half of those without Internet at home do not want it.

So like health insurance, expect our fine government leaders to go to extremes to reach those on the fringes — whether they want to be reached or not. And everyone should expect to pay for it. They want you on the grid, where they can find you.

Had this been our mentality a few decades ago, everyone would have had a government-issued telephone, newspaper and encyclopedia. How did anyone survive and thrive before the Internet?

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