The leading edge of the horizontal stab on jets is driven up and down for trim using a very large acme thread style screw jack. The Cessna 180/185 family and the Piper Cub/Super Cub/Pawnee family also do nearly the exact same thing, just with much smaller cable operated screw jacks. The early jets using jackscrew driven stabs included electric motors but maintained the manual cable-drum drive out of design conservatism, up through the 737.
The cable system is a lot of weight and maintenance, and the loads on the jack can be high enough in some out-of-trim flight conditions where you can't actually move the surface manually until you temporarily unload the stab with a large elevator input. In the case of the Ethiopian crash, they were boxed in by this problem by being too fast and too close to the ground - the elevator control inputs required to unload the screw jack so they could turn it would have made them dive even steeper (Piper Cubs also suffer from this problem where the little cable drum slips and you have to unload the surface to get it to move - on the 737 you just can't move it with the little wheel).
Then when you get to ever larger aircraft, to have a manually operated screw jack would require a cockpit wheel the size of a ship's helm, so in the late 60s and 70s, the designers developed multi-channel electrical control with sufficient redundancy to meet the single-point-of-failure risk standards without a mechanical system (they weren't "fly-by-wire" actually, more like "control-by-wire"; in CBW, the output is the same as the input but it's just done electronically, in FBW, the output is what a computer decides it should be after receiving the input command and may vary significantly from the actual input).
Anyway, bottom line is multi-channel control by wire stab systems (and FBW systems on FBW aircraft) meet the risk requirements to deal with trim failures (quits working, or runs away). The risk requirement for stab failures is not that high, usually categorized as "Major" in the Minor/Major/Hazardous/Catastrophic risk hierarchy, which determines minimum redundancy levels in design, and a dual channel CBW system with the appropriate controls and indicators meets that without old style cables (Boeing used that logic to justify the MCAS's sketchy architecture in the risk analysis - that's really where the ball was dropped).