FOX News, the arbiter and epitome of all things unbiased and sensible in news reporting, asks Are Libraries Necessary, or a Waste of Tax Money? partricularly during a period of recession and in Chicago’s case a budget crisis. The Fox News reporter secretly filmed for a number of hours in the (non-lending) bound periodicals section of a library, and then reported unsurprisingly that people were not borrowing books but just using the Internet.
Mary A. Dempsey of Chicago libraries puts them right about a few things. It is a very stout defence of libraries and well worth reading.
The public library is supported by taxpayers for the common good of all the people of Chicago – just like public school. We don’t ask our schools to make profit. Neither should we ask it of the public library. As journalist Walter Cronkite once remarked, “Whatever the cost of our libraries, the price is cheap compared to that of an ignorant nation.”