As National Library Week 2019 wraps up, my mind dwells on the the changing face of the public library in my lifetime.
A community public library is one of the only places in existence where anyone, regardless of background, income level, education, or physical or mental considerations can come. For free.
The library has always offered warmth, openness, acceptance, and safety. And all of this while helping to increase knowledge, gain education, answer questions, and help with quests.
I am of the generation who used the paper card catalog, periodical index, and microfiche to write a five page paper, double-spaced on an IBM Selectric typewriter.
Now, we have the internet, electronic books, magazines, and newspapers, all available on our numerous mobile devices. Simply type a few key words into the search bar, and you have a number of sites from which to choose for your information.
We have truly come a long way.
So, does that make the public library obsolete at worst, and stale at best?
No way! While it’s true that the library is not the only way to write a term paper these days, it is much more than a depository for books. The library is a meeting place. A place where we tell our stories, listen to others, and support one another through education and understanding. In this way, libraries connect and support communities, strengthen understanding and compassion, and all of this builds a solid foundation for becoming impassioned and active in growing and bettering our communities.
Join me today in showing support for this vital community resource, and patronize your library.