This guy I once dated said libraries were for poor people. I should have broken up with him then, but fear of loneliness can make one quite stupid. If only I had gone then to the library and taken out books on self-esteem....
The library was where Florence took us
instead of synagogue or church. It was as cherished as Town Hall or Carnegie. It was as sacred as the Met Museum
. It was as intimate as home
The library was a haven from chaos
and a secret passageway to knowing stuff stupid people didn't want us to know. I learned about where babies came from
and where Nazis went to (not on the same day, though). I listened to music I had to hear
but couldn't afford. And each time I took out a book
, I felt like it was Christmas, Chanukah and my birthday all rolled up in one. I still feel that way.
These days trundling down to my neighborhood library
or the one uptown, I see the 95 year old former Rocket still doing high kicks to the check-out guys and then scooping up her weekly stash of books.
I see neighbors from next door and from down the street picking up movies for the weekend
I see tons of babies and little kids bursting like fireworks because they are headed into story-hour.
I see people who can't afford laptops have access to the world.
I see the elderly have company and a place to go to read the day's paper.
And when I can't bear another wall to my own words, I see a quiet, safe space where I can keep writing.
I see my city, my life and my home.
The library has made sure democracy is for all of us, not just those who can afford an education, a laptop, or literacy. And yet, a proposed $43 million budget cut
is being introduced that would decimate what is already a beleaguered institution.
and fight back. Fight back against stupidity and short-sightedness. Click here
and fight for a world where, no matter how much you have in your pocket, you are entitled to knowledge.