Chilkat Valley News - Serving Haines and Klukwan, Alaska since 1966

Library books and information should be free


March 12, 2020 | View PDF

I understand the need for cutbacks and I accept that our library should not physically expand in these dire economic times. But, I am completely opposed to library patrons being charged “user fees,” as one of our borough assembly members has recently recommended.

For almost as long as America has been in existence, the idea that library books and information should be available to all of its citizens, regardless of their ability to pay, has been an equalizer. That concept is especially important now in a country that has become so bedeviled by money that the rich and guilty are treated better in our courts than the poor and innocent and where we have to pay extra in order to get through airport security lines at a decent pace.

Crouched in a corner of the large public library in Birmingham, Alabama; reading books that my family could not afford to buy in my elementary school years; I learned so much about people and lands beyond my own experiences. I hope the Haines Borough Assembly will continue to allow our residents and visitors to experience the wealth of information, technology and helpfulness available at our library free of charge.

Sharon Resnick


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