Twenty-plus years ago, there were not many phone service options available to New York residents. I remember driving to my grandmother’s apartment, as she was getting ready to leave, and I could not even get through to the other end of the line because of the distance. Now, phone service in New York City is generally considered to be one of the most reliable and competitive in the world. You can click here to learn about internet service providers in the area.
There are millions of people who, if they were to lose their phone service, would not be able to have access to their money or the majority of their friends and family and would have to go without even the ability to dial 911. I am speaking from experience here. So we wanted to put the issue on the table. I am not one of those people who believes that the FCC is the best way to regulate the Internet. I think the FCC should be more like the Federal Trade Commission or the California Public Utilities Commission. And the FCC needs to stand up to the phone companies. They need to be more like the New York Public Service Commission or the Connecticut Public Utilities Commission. If the phone companies want to make an industry out of this, that is their prerogative, but let us take a look at the facts. I would like to start by telling you about my grandmother, Joan. My grandfather was a radio announcer, and they were the only family in the neighborhood with a radio. When I was young, we would listen to the radio. At night we would turn the radio off and go to bed. In the mornings, I would wake up at 7:00 a.m., drive to the nearest phone booth, dial for a New York City number, and leave a message. The line would go to voicemail. In between calls, I’d wait to see if a message would come in the mail. Then I would put a call through to my grandmother’s house. Once I got in touch with my grandmother, I would go in and ask her if I could talk to her grandson. She never turned me down. I started out by having her call my grandfather’s office at home. She gave me a fake name, but it was easy to guess. I would tell her that my grandfather had been in the hospital lately and that I would like to talk to him. She got very upset when she saw my name. She asked if I would rather have a glass of wine or sleep in a casket. That’s when she said, “You need to start calling your grandfather.” I had to start making telephone calls. My grandma could only hear the person on the other end of the line, so she was not able to identify my grandmother or how to get in touch with her.
Another story I heard is that a father of an elderly woman was on his deathbed. He had had dementia for many years and had lost his mind, and he didn’t know how to even drive. The hospital was not going to release him until his daughter showed up with the key to unlock the door. He died in the hospital within minutes.
Is this a reasonable analogy?
When I was a child and my parents divorced, the custody of my brothers and sisters was split between my mom and dad. I ended up living with my mom and her kids and my brothers and sisters with their dad. Both sides argued in court for months. When the case went to trial, the judge decided that since the kids and my brothers and sisters all lived in my dad’s house, he should take custody of them. I can only assume that this wasn