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Without net neutrality, small businesses don’t stand a chance online

Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai waits to be introduced during an April 18 forum in Washington, DC. | (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

The U.S. Senate is just one vote away from overturning the FCC’s decision to repeal net neutrality provisions. This vote, set to take place this month, will determine if small businesses will continue to have an equal chance of competing with big business. It will also determine the future of free speech in America.

On Dec. 14, 2017, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai voted to repeal net neutrality rules, which allowed internet providers to slow the loading speeds for smaller websites. What this means for small businesses is that they would have to pay more in order for their websites to load at the same speed of more established websites.

For a small business, a slow website could mean less web traffic, which could affect its growth, sales and advertising.

SEND LETTERS TO: letters@suntimes.com. Please include your neighborhood or hometown and a phone number for verification purposes.

How are small business websites and blogs going to compete with big businesses that have millions in revenue?

Big companies like Comcast, Verizon, AT&T and Spectrum have lobbied unknown amounts of money for the FCC to repeal net neutrality. At one time, Pai was even a lawyer for Verizon.

In order to give small businesses a fair, competitive chance and to uphold the First Amendment, Americans across the country must encourage their legislators to vote in favor of net neutrality. The First Amendment is at stake.

Abrar Qureshi, Willowbrook

Good things can come from unlikely people

Regarding (“Give Trump credit for Korea progress” — May 2): If a peace treaty takes place between North and South Korea, along with the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, President Donald Trump being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize is not as far-fetched as people think.

At one time, Theodore Roosevelt could best be described as a war-monger. He was an imperialist who supported expansionism. And when given the opportunity, as assistant secretary of the Navy, he sent a fateful telegram to Commodore George Dewey that resulted in the rout of the Spanish fleet in Manila Bay during the early stages of the Spanish-American War.

Later, he fought with the Rough Riders in Cuba and charged up Kettle Hill. Upon his return from Cuba he declared, “Oh, but we have had a bully fight!”

Despite his bellicose role in the Spanish-American War, he was incredibly awarded the 1906 Nobel Peace Prize for his role in mediating the end of the Russo-Japanese War.

Only time will tell if Trump will mirror Roosevelt’s triumph.

Larry Vigon, Jefferson Park

Pruitt, a perfect pick for the EPA in ‘Trumpworld’ 

Scott Pruitt was appointed to secretary of the Environmental Protection Agency by President Trump because he is both a climate change denier and, while in Oklahoma, spent his career as attorney general challenging EPA regulations in court on behalf of his friends in the fossil fuel industry. And now he’s rolling back regulations that prevent pollution and safeguard our air and water. All the while, he’s ridding the agency of scientists and deliberately refusing to defend the agency’s budget.

Additionally, he’s unethical, with questionable spending on office improvements, a “secure” phone booth, armored cars, first class airlines tickets, “business” trips (Morocco to pitch Liquefied Natural Gas for Carl Icahn), meetings with industry lobbyists, large security details and “special” lodging arrangements in a lobbyist’s condo. Pruitt has also used of two personal email accounts for business, as well as working massive and illegal pay raises for his pals he brought to the agency from Oklahoma.

And, when asked by Congress and reporters about all of this questionable activity and spending, either Pruitt denies it happened or says it is “necessary.”

Only in Trumpworld

Tom Minnerick, Elgin