We’ve covered a lot of book-related protests on this blog, from Kindle owners upset about the high price of ebooks to defenders of the Qu’ran staging public readings to counter the threat of burnings. We even launched our own campaign to reshelve George W. Bush’s memoir, after seeing the Brits do the same to Tony Blair. So I guess you could say the literary crowd is an active crowd. But this latest book-related protest may be the best I’ve seen yet. According to Boing Boing:
The library in Stony Stratford near Milton Keynes, England, urged its patrons to check out every book on the shelves as a way of proving to the local council that its collection and facilities provide a vital service to the community. Stony Stratford is one of many towns across the UK that are facing severe library closures as the Tory-LibDem coalition government recklessly slashes its transfer payments to local governments (while breaking their promise to rein in enormous bonuses at the banks, even the ones that are owned by the taxpayer).
The protest, which was organized on Facebook, managed to get all 16,000 volumes checked out in under 24 hours. The future of the library will not be known, however, until the council announces its budget on February 22.
Waging Nonviolence is hiring a writer to interview leading movement figures and analysts and produce one Q&A-style article per week. The writer will work with our small editorial team to identify the interview subject each week. For the most part, we’ll be looking to hear from activists, organizers and scholars who can shed light on… More
By melding theory and practice, Philadelphia’s Vanguard S.O.S. are building skills and collective power.
The 1958 voyage of the Golden Rule offers important strategic lessons on how to confront an overwhelming evil and win.
The great Carl Sagan is quoted as saying, “You can judge the value of a society by the way a society values its libraries.”
Closer to home, we are finding more and more communities turning away from the public trust and support of public libraries. In New Jersey, there are plans to close the Camden Public Library.
The fascinating thing is these resources are taken away from communities and people who need them the most. It is always those with little political power, minorities, the immigrant, etc who suffer. Those who may not have the literacy or technical skills to become self-empowered.
And lets not kid ourselves, information is a commodity and it is power! So if you take libraries away, you really are taking away political power and any upward mobility a person or a community may have. At the very least, it makes it harder for those to join in the process.