Libraries: The Fall of the Last Bastion

Libraries, at face value, are wonderful things. A catalogue of books and learning resources that is accessible by all at no cost—no one could oppose such an institution.

Unfortunately, it seems the public at large no longer hold book learning in the high esteem that it deserves. What should be an almost sacred place for learning and expanding one’s intellect has become just another corner for the great unwashed to while away their lives.

At the time of writing, my local library is over run with screaming children. As with most places, ‘coffee mums’ have taken over. Of course, everywhere must be accessible and effectively serve as a playground for their litter of snot oozing little squawk bags.

Bringing children to read is one thing. Bringing them to run around screeching and having organised sing-alongs is quite another. Is nowhere safe?

Further to this unpleasantness, it seems libraries now offer a place for vagabonds to sleep. On my last two study sessions, I have seen drunk looking men literally wrapping themselves in newspapers and collapsing in the reading booths.

In the UK, libraries face austere times. I understand that they need to entice new visitors, but surely not at the expense of those who wish to use them for their intended purpose?

So, just like they have saturated the blogosphere with their inane ‘mummy’ blogs, these women now they further erode culture by making libraries unusable. Coupled with the free-for-all sleepover that libraries now seem to be, it’s a sorry state of affairs.

Libraries should be reserved for study. Period. Just like cinemas and quiet carriages on trains, they should be seen as an opportunity to show just how considerate a person can be of another’s privacy and right to learn.






Libraries Lament…


It is a good thing that Jeremy Corbyn has recently leant his support to the libraries, museums and galleries protest due to take place in November. His entire fan base is comprised of online trolls and professional protesters, so he could bring some useful clout to an important issue.

Unfortunately for JC, he may well be onto a lost cause…

Almost 350 libraries have closed in the last decade, with those that are still open becoming increasingly reliant on volunteers and attempting to lure visitors by offering coffee mornings and play sessions for squawking children—hardly appropriate.

As a committed autodidact and someone who believes in education for education’s sake, I understand the importance of having free and inclusive resources for all. Unfortunately, the ever eroding standards of culture and education in this country mean that a successful protest—if there is such a thing— may simply lead to a country full of well-funded, but empty libraries.

Education standards have been continually lowered so that students from ‘underprivileged’ backgrounds can attend any course they choose, regardless of whether  or not they have a strong intellectual foundation. Quotas have meant that someone’s background can be a passport to employment or further education, irrespective of their ability. Yes, gone are the days when reading to improve one’s knowledge was a necessary step towards success.

Regarding culture: as previously mentioned, we live in an age of instant gratification. Joe Public does not want to invest time learning to appreciate the finer things in life, when he can sit at home watching Jeremy Kyle or Big Brother. Perhaps if all libraries rebranded as Mills and Boon rental outlets, they may have some success, but I would hope that any self-respecting librarians would rather just close up shop.

So before pumping money into libraries and cultural venues, perhaps the government would start chastising the booze guzzling benefits scroungers for what they are, restore entry standards of universities to encourage intellectual endeavour, and convince the beeb to provide a counter culture to the mindless drivel currently on our screens.

Perhaps then our society will evolve into one that requires more libraries to meet the thirst for knowledge….

If only.