Libraries are very special places. There’s a lot of debate in my city right now on whether we really need a giant new expensive library in the middle of downtown and usually I’m on the fiscally conservative side of that kind of a debate, but I visit the library that would be replaced by this project almost every day and it’s pretty dingy. So I’ve had to reconsider very carefully the meaning of the term “pork barrel”.
Part of the debate focuses on this: The new location would be harder to get to and a little farther from the soup kitchens. The bums in my city also visit that library every single day and I guess as a mommy I wouldn’t want my kids to see someone go insane and have a fight with the security guards at the place they go to meet new worlds (as I recently did). But neither do I want to take away what would be my favourite hangout as a homeless bum. There are branch libraries that seem more family-friendly…
Another point people are making is that we’re not getting rid of the books. Usually the person making this point is quick to mention that he himself is a huge fan of reading real books for the feel and texture and smell and tangibility, but that the world is moving on and libraries really should be going digital to keep up with the times. Someone recently said that this is what happens when the only people who vote are little old ladies. Maybe I should go hang out with these old ladies. I bet they get to keep cats. Anyway, recusing from the rest of this fracas. It’s already voted in and there’s no changing it now-unless someone figures out how to use the millions we’ve put into this as a drop in the bucket to repay our current national debt. Don’t even want to think about that.
Progress: complete for my current city.