Dirty pictures, lazy snark

October 6, 2006

Isn’t it thrilling to see civic engagement in action?

“’We may as well purchase the porn shop down at the junction and move it to Eastwood. Some day this library will be drawing the same clientele,’ [concerned citizen Louise] Mills said.”

In my mind, I picture several of the citizens attending the meeting uncomfortably adjusting their collars and praying they had the presence of mind to shred or burn their porn shop receipts. Honestly, can the two audiences really be entirely mutually exclusive? Are people using the library’s internet terminals just to look up recipes?

“’I don’t want seedy people coming into the library and moving into our community,’ [Sarah] Aulgur said.”

Because nothing… nothing… gives a community the wrong kind of reputation like the knowledge that their libraries make room on the shelves for graphic-novel autobiographies. Aulgur’s comment also suggests that the Marshall library has some kind of Studio 54 velvet rope thing going on, and only the pure of heart, the non-seedy, are granted admission. Perhaps Aulgur doesn’t fully understand the library’s function as a resource for the entire populace, even if they’re seedy.

“’It’s not a matter of censorship,’ John Raines of Marshall said, ‘but a matter of looking out for our kids.’”

Hey, now! It can be about both. Because really, looking out for kids can and has been used to justify attempts to restrict, isolate, or condemn virtually every type of human behavior. It almost leads one to believe that the logical continuation of Raines’s statement would be, “Censorship is just a happy fringe benefit.”

“’If it shouldn’t be on a billboard on I-70, it shouldn’t be in a public library,’ Mark Lockhart said.”

Now, see, I drive I-70 a few times a year, and there are billboards for gambling, guns, gentlemen’s clubs (featuring conveniently placed poles), and reputable purveyors of adult novelties.

I have to say that I’m impressed with how resolute the Marshall library staff is being, especially when you compare it to their colleagues to the west.