Friends of the Public Library in the NY Times

28libraries1-articleLargeAny friend of the Public Library is a friend of ours, which is why we’re friends of the Friends of the Public Library.  Not to mention I can’t tell you the number of times some keen-eyed Mercantile Library patron has called me from the awesome paradise of used books The Friends run (as pictured to the right from the New York Times on Dec. 27th) to request whether we’d like this or that, including mid-1800s publications of Ye Olde Young Mens’ Mercantile Library Association.  Imagine, therefore my delight to find The Friends featured in an article about the great debate raging across America over the plight and changing role of public libraries.   The New York Times further encourages readers to join the debate over “Do we still need libraries?”  The answer seems pretty obvious, but it makes for an interesting conversation on the civic and cultural life of our fair nation, as well as what we stand to gain or lose by allowing political and economic pressure to turn that bastion of the free exchange of ideas and information into something more akin to a retail bookstore.   Talk amongst yourselves.  -Ed Scripsi

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