New York Observer columnist Andre Walker, who learned to read on his own dollar thank-you-very-much, has no use for public libraries. Understandably suspicious of a long-standing service whose funding over the last few decades has very likely been taken over by crypto-Soviet sleeper cells, Walker tweeted a very smart take on libraries recently. He probably researched it using books from schools.
His sentiment, which reads as very obviously short-sighted and bad to anyone who understands the purpose of public libraries, didn’t go unchallenged for long, however. Smelling blood in the microblogging waters, Twitter’s “TheAngriestLibrarian” fulfilled the promise of his name.
The righteous fury continues with TheAngriestLibrarian detailing the many, many uses of the modern library. He mentions that, more than rooms filled with free books, libraries also provide “educational and recreational material” for local communities, offer internet access to those without, and create ideal spaces for LGBT teenagers to learn more about themselves or immigrants to study English.
Refusing to accept that maybe, just maybe, he was wrong, Walker continued, unafraid to soldier on without actual rebuttal (other than, strangely, denigrating that classic social parasite, the French teacher):
The waters freshly chummed again, Walker continued to be told what a complete goofball he is in ever greater numbers. TheAngriestLibrarian dutifully commented, highlighting the fact that libraries also serve as potentially life-saving cooling and warming spaces for the homeless—and, as before, a place with free internet access that facilitates job-seeking.
In a twist ending, overwhelming collective disgust had an effect. Much like some institution whose name is impossible to remember right now, the public contributed to a wider store of knowledge that corrected false assumptions, free of use!
If you’re interested in helping out American libraries, consider donating in memory of Walker’s death by massive owning.