17 June 2009

Tough Times & Libraries

As many of you know the state of Michigan is in serious shape right now. Lay off's and budget cuts are the norm, finances are askew all over.

For some reason the budget cuts always seem to aim straight at libraries - the arts. In Michigan once again the budget cuts are aimed straight at the libraries - especially the Library of Michigan.

It seems our <> gracious govenor herself just can't seem to find anything or anywhere else to cut so she immediately turns her attention to our library. Courthouses and city governments all over are raising the prices of vital records - all in the name of cutting deficits.

Newsflash - there are alot of other places to raise revenue than gunning for the general population that happens to enjoy libraries & the arts. How about if I make a few suggestions?

Hang in there on this one - stay with me. I despise drunks. People who can not go to a sporting event, or concert without getting knock down blasted out of their minds DRUNK. Every concert - every sporting event, I always encounter drunks. People who don't know their limits. So why not a higher tax on alcohol? Let them pay. My going to the library doesn't lead to any casualties or accidents, its nothing to anyone. Lets increase the tax on alcohol, especially alcohol served at sporting events & concerts. I'm not talking pennies, I'm talking quarters and more....

This next one won't be popular either, but sports are a major thing here. Are those sports teams giving back financially to the community? Or is all about how much money can one bank account hold? How about a percentage of every seat ticket sold goes to the state? Okay so some of our sports teams aren't doing well, but still, if you put 30,000 people in tiger stadium and 15,000 of them have a beer, and you charge an extra buck for each cup... hello!!!!

Yeah I know Michigan people are out of work, out of benefits, on unemployment, but they still find the money to go to their sporting events & concerts and get wasted, so why not let them pay a bit more so that the libraries can stop cutting services, perhaps stay open a little more? Some of the biggest names in music play here and they play to full houses, and boy do the people suck down the beer there too! So add another buck on the tab. The drunks will never notice.

Is our society really so dumb to believe that its more important to support sports events than to keep our libraries open? Why is it that the government in this state just can't to keep its hands off our libraries? Our country seriously needs to wake up and take a good hard look at how our libraries rank in importance in this country. Kids can't read, kids can't write, half of them don't even know the capital of the state they live in. But lets take more money from our libraries and our schools. Yeah that will get us ahead.

Granted the library of Michigan's main focus is Genealogy, not something that every single person is doing. BUT look at the Allen County public library in Ft Wayne. Maybe Ms. Granholm should take a drive down and see how to make the library profitable. Library of Michigan has that potential but only if we manage to somehow keep it open thru this crisis.

If you have used the Library of Michigan in the past, or hope to use it in the future I strongly urge you to join others in this fight to save our library. Write your politicians let them know how you stand - voice your support for saving the library - write Jennifer Granholm and let her know you're tired of this! Take a stand. Because if you don't - and alot of you won't - the library will be gone and then you know what they say...

You never miss a good thing until its gone!

Images from the library of Michigan, Lansing, Michigan


Becky Jamison said...

I have to post a comment because I agree with you 100%. I'm glad you said it. It makes me sick that Americans glorify actors and athletes, but discount learning and intelligence. Too many young people have never been to a library and never will use one. What a shame. The government reduces our participation and experience in the Arts from the elementary school level on up. But SPORTS---that's a different story. Good post, Karen!

Karen said...

Thanks Becky!

Diane Oslund said...

I agree also. If our government would add to the Library of Michigan collection instead of threatening to take it away completely, they could increase tourist traffic in the good city of Lansing. That would benefit the hotels and restaurants in the area not to mention the malls and speciality shops. Genealogists travel to research, thus they spend money in the community where they can research their families. Wake up Michigan and make this work for you instead of throwing it all away.

Brenda said...

If someone would take the 'gov' Mackinac Island home and sell it .. the income would be great but the savings of 60k+ a year for upkeep would be better used elsewhere! Our gen society is trying to help with letters/emails/phone calls.