Thursday, November 10, 2022

What's the Difference Between a Libertarian and a Librarian?

Sounds like the beginning of a riddle, but it's not.

Just a few days ago, my friend Bill, the state chairman of the Libertarian Party of Delaware as it happens, approached one of the local libraries in northern Delaware to propose a Liberty Story Hour. The program was to be presented by him and perhaps a colleague or two. The program would feature stories about the founding fathers, limited government, responsible spending, etc. and would be tailored to children and be presented in an age appropriate way.

Bill got a very polite response from the library.



Thank you so much for the program description. I spoke to my manager about the program and we are going to pass. While we appreciate the literacy aspect of this, we just don't think this would be a good fit for our public library. Again, thank you for considering us!

Have a great evening.

Signed xxxxxxxx


Her Title xxxxxxx

That was a polite response, right? If the response had been written in Ordinary English then I'd have said yes. It was a polite response. But the response wasn't written in Ordinary English. That was Bureaucrat English. When you translate from Bureaucrat English to Ordinary English, what Bill really got was a big fat Fuck You! Yes, I realize that this paragraph gets cut if published anywhere else but on my own blog, but I had to get it out of my system!

Not a good fit for "our library?" What does that mean exactly? Not in keeping with "our" community standards maybe? Not in keeping with "our" politics perhaps? Back in 2019, another local library held a Drag Queen Story Time. Oh, you thought those only happened in places like San Francisco or Boston or New York City? Nope. This Drag Queen Story Time was held right here in our own back yard at the Old New Castle Library. I'll emphasize, it was not the same library my friend Bill approached, but they're both right here in our community.

Now, let me just say, it's not that I was a huge advocate of Liberty Story Hour, but I didn't oppose it either. It seemed like a perfectly reasonable thing to do, and a wise man once told me, "Don't criticize someone's activism just because it isn't your particular brand of activism." So I'm not writing this article to advocate for Liberty Story Hour in our public libraries. I'm not even writing this article to oppose Drag Queen Story Times in those libraries. There are plenty of others who may be motivated to write those articles and God bless them. I'm writing this article to ask just how relevant libraries are these days. And maybe to talk a little bit about pronouns. Heaven forgive me, but we have to take a little time to talk about those pronouns.

I'm a traditionalist. I don't use pronouns. By the way, traditionalist is not a dog whistle for bigot, homophobe, xenophobe or any other "phobe." It's not even a dog whistle for conservative. I'm a Libertarian. Tradition is not a dirty word, and it's not a dog whistle for anything else. If you want to talk about a dog whistle, let's talk about those pronouns! Would anybody have any difficulty guessing on which end of the political spectrum or even the tradition spectrum that librarian resides? Not once you realize what information listing your pronouns really conveys. Now that's a dog whistle. To be honest, I'm grateful for this dog whistle. The message comes through loud and clear. I think we know who we're dealing with here. Perhaps Bill should have offered to do Liberty Story Hour in drag.

Oddly enough, on reflection, I realized that despite having read that librarian's email several times, I had never noticed what her pronouns were. Don't misunderstand me. I recognized that she had listed her pronouns, but the information those pronouns were meant to convey, never registered with me. I don't mock this librarian for whatever sexual orientation those pronouns reveal. I mock her for the arrogance, the presumptuousness, the narcissism that posting them reveals. I don't ridicule her based on any new awareness of who she prefers to have sex with. I ridicule her for presuming that I care, or even that I should care!

So, enough about pronouns. What about libraries?

There is a lot of controversy surrounding what those of us with traditional values see as an attempt to indoctrinate children in our public schools. Between the 1619 Project, climate alarmism, Gay Pride, and all the other woke agendas being pushed in our public schools, it's surprising they have any time left to teach the ABC's. Judging by test scores, maybe they don't. I think it's time to recognize that, generally speaking, the same woke ideologues who control the education system in this country, also control most of the libraries. It used to be the responsible thing to do to promote and fund libraries in your community. Is it still such a good idea? If libraries have become the domain of propagandists and indoctrinators, maybe the answer is no.

Maybe that librarian did my friend Bill a favor by rejecting his idea for a Liberty Story Hour. Why would a traditionalist want to lure parents of impressionable kids into a library to get habituated to a system that may allow you your Liberty Story Hour this week, but next week might be sponsoring a field trip for six year olds to the local drag bar. They could use Liberty Story Hour as a gateway to introduce your kids to all the other woke agendas to which they are so devoted. Parents have a difficult enough time fending off that indoctrination in the public schools. If you're one of those traditional parents, why would you then willingly subject your children to the same propaganda at the library? Especially if these programs are predominantly run by a bunch of woke, pronoun sporting harpies more interested in recruiting soldiers for "the cause" than in promoting the welfare of your kids.

I used to be a huge fan of libraries. Once upon a time, I was also a big fan of Public Radio, but they've managed to ruin that too. I spent a lot of time in libraries. At one time, I looked forward to my retirement years when I could spend even more time in libraries. Then a funny thing happened. This new thing called the internet came along, and all of a sudden, libraries just didn't seem that relevant any more. These days, that's what the internet is for. Maybe its time to realize that even though it was once a good idea to promote libraries to your children, perhaps in today's climate, that's not so important. Is blind devotion to the anachronistic idea of a physical library really such sound thinking? As far as public policy is concerned, perhaps less money should be devoted to libraries and a bit more focus placed on ensuring an internet free of viewpoint censorship.

There was a time when criticizing libraries would have been considered almost sacrilegious, and I'm sure there are hordes of angry, blue haired, pierced, and tattooed, Bernie loving librarians organizing, even as we speak, preparing the campaign to get me canceled for daring to speak against the institution. For them, I offer this:

A Libertarian walks into a library and asks the librarian for an ounce of legal cannabis. The librarian replies indignantly, "Sir, this is a library." The Libertarian apologizes, leans in a bit closer and WHISPERS back, "Sorry. I'd like an ounce of legal cannabis."