Tag Archives: Big Brother

Libraries & Censorship

A photo of the Rural Library Services bookmobile with the state library building in the background.
A photo of the Rural Library Services bookmobile with the state library building in the background.

It’s rather ironic and quite hypocritical for the Oregon State Library to subscribe to a newsletter on censorship. It’s the newsletter of the National Coalition Against Censorship, or NCAC.

I can’t access the group’s Facebook page from the library’s computers, because Facebook is deemed inappropriate. I can’t read the NCAC’s tweets, because Twitter is a no-no. Yet, with my own personal laptop I can use the wireless network provided by the library to do it. Of course, anyone who can’t afford a laptop or similar device is out of luck.

I can’t listen to my music on Grooveshark while I write or research. But Pandora isn’t blocked for some reason. (Don’t tell, or someone will probably pull the plug.) I like listening to something while I am working on my stack of stuff for the day, whether it’s music or radio, usually streaming over the Net.

I suggest the staff of the Oregon State Library actually start reading the newsletter and implementing less restrictive policies. After all, the First Amendment doesn’t stop at the library doors.

Perhaps someone from the NCAC will contact the folks behind these outdated, paternalistic, Big Brother approaches to managing a public entity.


Here We Go Again

I wrote awhile back about kids and their dirty, little lemonade stands. I even wrote a quick poem about it.

Four-year-old Abigail Krutsinger lives in eastern Iowa and was trying to make a lazy buck during RAGBRAI — the Des Moines Register‘s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa — an annual event across the state, expecting a horde of cyclists to hit town.

CORALVILLE, IowaPolice closed down a lemonade stand in Coralville, telling its 4-year-old operator and her dad that she didn’t have a permit.

Common sense ain’t so common any more.

The city said it was enforcing the ordinance for health reasons, because people have gotten sick from food and drink they got during RAGBRAI.

Rather than targeting four-year-old’s lemonade stands, why not target the folks dispensing tainted food?