Monday, July 25, 2011
Indianapolis Letter Writer Speaks Up for Public Libraries
Support for library supports the common good. (Indianapolis Star, 7/22/2011)
Excerpt: Yes, Kindles, Nooks, iPads and Amazon have changed the ways in which Americans consume words. But this hasn't changed the need for a free and well-funded library system. Libraries have worked to meet the challenge of the digital age, all the while growing their physical collections and expanding services.
My kids come from a home with computers, e-readers and a substantial library of books of their own. Yet we take a weekly trip to the library. This week, my daughters met two groups of kids on a field trip with their summer camp, talked with a cluster of truly impressive knitters, and joined the summer reading program. We also watched the film "Tangled." I had a reasonably priced latte and worked on my laptop using the free wifi.
We taxpayers are not subsidizing the book industry by supporting the public library, as Kirby fears; rather, we are supporting the common good. Lady Bird Johnson once remarked that perhaps no place in any community is so totally democratic as the town library.