Contributed by Ryan Curry on: Thursday 01 July @ 10:55:54
Samantha Smart makes many good points regarding recent attacks on public libraries and their vital democratic role in her June 9 article.
However, her article is fatally flawed for attributing this problem to the Minneapolis Public Library Board.
The drastic cuts in State funding are at the root of this evil attack. Ms. Smart is correct in that the libraries have been slashed, the wonderful free computer labs do sit dark and empty too much, all people are missing out on great library experiences, and certainly Internet filtering is not ideal.
Filtering was chosen because Congress stipulated strict funding penalties for libraries that do not filter, and the Board chose to cut the budget no further because filtering can be turned off by any adult patron who so requests.
To direct blame at the Library Board for these atrocities is irresponsible and damaging. The Library Board has been given $20 to get us our Library groceries for the month; no wonder we are hungry. Despite the flaws of the Library Board, the fact remains that there is not a magic bank to go and get money from to pay for libraries.