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by Rob Engle
Friday, Oct. 06, 2006 at 12:59 PM
According to four professional librarians at the Long Beach Public LIbrary, the library is currently trashing its collection by throwing our thousands (yes, thousands) of books that are in good condition. Library employees have been instructed to lie to the public by telling them that the books are being "recycled" or sold. In reality, almost all of the books are being pulped. This is the very issue over which the head of the San Francisco Public Library was forced to resign a couple of years ago; he was caught throwing many thousands of books into a landfill and would have disposed of more if staff members had not notified the public of what was taking place at the library.
This is outrageous, particularly at a time when the library is telling the public that it does not have enough funds to operate and is demanding that a regressive tax be voted in if people in the Long Beach area want decent library service. Among the books destroyed so fare are a massive number of works on the JFK Assassination that are no longer in print, numerous classic works on the history of California by Carey McWilliams and others, piles of serious novels, and thousands of other volumes that are viewed as not entertaining and therefore do inappropiate in a public library. The assumption is that the average library patron is a semi-literate ignoramous, incapable of reading anything more sophisticated that a biography of Jerry Springer or Paris Hilton.
The director of Main Library told the staff that she sees the old days of public libraries serving as research institutions or places where people can find serious books can be found as over, and that now libraries must compete with bookstores by specializing in "best sellers" (by Tom Clancy, Danielle Steele, and others of that ilk). This, she claims, will make the masses more likely to approve tax increases for the libraries . Apparantly she also thinks it will help guarantee the cushy jobs of people like her.
She instructed the staff never to buy a book that was published before 2005.
Throwing out mountains of books that should be kept by any library worthy of the name or at least given to people who might value and cherish them is destruction of public property; those who order the destruction should be arrested. If you want to make your opinion known visit the library website at www.lbpl.org and let the director know what you think of the library's current "weeding policy."
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||Friday, Oct. 06, 2006 at 5:18 PM
|Can you say
||Saturday, Oct. 07, 2006 at 12:41 PM
|"Pulping a readable book is modern-day book burning"
||Saturday, Oct. 07, 2006 at 1:13 PM
|Why don't they give them away to book dealers?
||Saturday, Oct. 07, 2006 at 10:06 PM
||Wednesday, Oct. 11, 2006 at 12:39 PM
|reporting on book trashing
||Wednesday, Oct. 11, 2006 at 2:48 PM
|Exposing library destroyers
||Saturday, Oct. 14, 2006 at 12:20 PM
|Long Beach Library
||Tuesday, Feb. 20, 2007 at 2:28 PM
||Friday, Feb. 23, 2007 at 12:29 PM
|Out On the Ocean
||Tug Boat Dan
||Thursday, Mar. 08, 2007 at 11:35 AM
|Pulping in censorship.
||Wednesday, Apr. 04, 2007 at 9:14 AM
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