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Libraries Were Put Together by a Previous Generation
One thing stood out to me in this interview about book banning, libraries were put together as public institutions by previous generations. In some cases, not even by our parents, but our grandparents. They voted that it was a good use of public funds to provide books for free.
We’re in a world where the library is threatened. While the removal of the library would slightly reduce my access to books, I’d just be restricted to what I could afford to purchase and I’m fairly affluent, so there wouldn’t be a huge impact on what I read. While you may not feel like it, if you’re reading this you’re likely reasonably affluent, simply because you have the time to read some dude on the internet writing.
In How to Do Nothing, Jenny Odell talks about the fact that wealthy neighbourhoods have more parks, but really only because affluent people have more time and resources to fight for parks. That means that as affluent people, we need to fight for things that don’t just benefit us. One of the best things we can do with our affluence to help spread equity is to fight for good things, like libraries, that won’t have a significant material change in our lives.
That means showing up to city council meetings and voicing your opinion that libraries should be funded and left alone by book banners. That means voting for candidates that support progressive policies so that we can all have less scarcity in our lives.
Previous generations have done some good things for the world we live in, but it’s up to us to make sure these good things continue to exist so that future generations have access to books.
Progress on Time to Think
This week I processed How to Do Nothing by Jenny Odell, out of that came two good ideas. First, if you have kids and they’re little, you just don’t have much time. Let yourself off the hook.
Second, much of the manufactured community around us is no longer built for children. It’s much rarer to see a street of kids playing now. That means that parents are on call far more often to keep an eye on kids. The knock-on effect of this is that we have less time because the kids are always on top of us.
I’m lucky in that my neighbourhood always has kids running around it. Last Monday my kids were off school and had a sleepover across the street. Then it snowed and they spent the day outside in our backyard with the neighbour. Around 4 pm they were tired and wet so they came inside had cider and played video games for a bit. Ultimately, we had an almost entirely kid-free day in two houses as the kids played outside on the street and in backyards.
Not only is this good for the adults to have more time, its’ good for the kids to have time to spend without adults lurking over them where they can work out their own problems as practice for being an adult.
If you’re looking for a planner for 2024 then The Sweet Setup did a nice guide on how to choose a planner.
Chris had some good advice to students taking notes for coures.
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