Opinion

OUT ON A LIMB: You’ll have to pry my book out of my cold, dead hands

I have to throw my voice out in support of our little library. And libraries in general

A letter to the editor by Mike Richmond last week wasn’t so much focused on libraries. It was more about municpal spending habits and propensity for raising taxes. But he wrote one little line that raised my eyebrows when I saw it. I knew that it would prompt a reaction and it did.

Richmond complained about the idea of building a new library, contending it would be wasted money.

“Books will be a thing of the past in a few years – everything is on the computer,” he said.

Well that generated a few letters in reply.

Keep in mind that everybody has been predicting the death of newspapers ever since television news was invented. And, in the words of Steve McQueen in Papillon, “We’re still here!” Books might take on a new format going forward (e-books, etc.) but the vast storehouse of knowledge, art and entertainment in existing books is not going to be converted to an eletronic form any time soon. Whose tax dollars are going to be used to conduct that massive conversion?

Plus there’s no sign of books not being printed in the near future. Just look at the massive sales of the Harry Potter series.

Libraries are like theatres and recreation centres; Those who don’t use them resent funding them. And it’s usually people who no longer have children at home.

Libraries might change and become multi-media centres but they’re still going to be necessary because they store information that’s accessible to all.

There’s no good controversy that isn’t worth revisiting...So, I’m a little surprised that there has been a resurgence of opposition to building two new hospitals in Campbell River and Comox.

I thought this issue was dealt with. While I agree that polticial and financial crises could scuttle the projects, it would seem unlikely that the recent complaints about it are going to have any effect. In Campbell River, we’re hearing complaints about using the existing VIHA-owned property as the site for the new hospital.

After all the years of wrangling over one facility or two facilities and where they’re going to be located, it seems unlikely that the province is going to suddenly slap itself on the forehead and say, “You’re right! This is a stupid plan, let’s drop everything and go back to the drawing board!”

Yeah, like that’s going to happen. We can only hope and pray for a complete provincial financial meltdown in order to terminate this mad plan.  That of, course, is ironic sarcasm. Or sarcastic irony, depending on your point of view.

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