A very inspiring video from the New York Public Library:
Unlike critics of the Library’s plan to transform the central branch from a researcher’s storehouse into a vital hub of activity — a former curator sniffs that the Mid-Manhattan branch across the street is “utter chaos. And it will all come here — the noise, the teenage problems, the circulating DVDs” — I think the Library has it exactly right. The fabled stacks of books in the main branch will merely be relocated, not destroyed, not made inaccessible. But a living library should be a vibrant gathering place for the community, especially the next generation — those thousands of noisy kids and teenagers that the supporters of the library-as-silent-crypt disdain. Democracy IS noise and chaos — that’s how people engage with ideas and with each other, and learn to become citizens. And the library should be its beating heart.
Give to the NYPL here. And support your own local library as well.