Wednesday, April 17, 2013
Shades of Fahrenheit 451
'Burn the books, jail the librarians!'
Submitted by Betty Krawczyk, Cumberland
kidding. There is a full Monty attack on the libraries and archives of
Canada. Stephen Harper not only wants to erase the written and film history
of Canada stored in Federal libraries across the nation, but the very memory
of this history, especially the environmental, aboriginal, fisheries and
oceans and the Canada Heritage Libraries along with Foreign Affairs.
All are being disappeared, either by a thousand cuts or outright closure
(Canadian Associations of University Teachers).
And to make Harper’s new code of conduct on how to disappear Canadian
history complete, the librarians now associated with our disappearing
libraries (this will presumably also affect local public librarians) are
being told how to conduct themselves when off-duty as well as on-duty.
If librarians consent to give a talk about our libraries in public schools
or at conventions, Harper has warned them in no uncertain terms that "they
will be engaging in risky behavior" (Postmedia News (3/16/13).
Librarians are being told by Mr. Harper that they must remember they have “a
duty of loyalty” to “the duly elected government” i.e. Harper. And the new
code of conduct spells out the risks any librarian takes who should slip and
say something derogatory about our disappeared and disappearing libraries
and archives. They can be reported to the government (CICIS?). Librarians
are being encouraged to snitch on each other and are told who to call to do
Not only is Mr. Harper an unbeliever in science, he has a deep seated
aversion to learning. To remembering. To the evolution of thought. To the
preservation of the rich history of Canada, of the troubles and turmoil's of
Canada, but also of the triumphs over ignorance, racism, sexism and the
separation of church and state. Imperfect, and some of it is horrible, but
it’s been recorded and it’s all there. Or was there.
We need this material in our libraries and archives. We have paid for this
material, we use it, we value it and we’re going to fight for it, Mr.
Harper. We want our books and archives back. Never mind those crazy war
planes and other war junk you want to buy to help bring on the Armageddon
you envision. Act like a leader of the people for once, instead of a craven
hearted fascist who burns the histories of the people.
I think you know that when you disappear the people’s histories, you
disappear the people. Not that we have been visible to you anyway because
you can’t see us from your anti-intellect, anti-environmentalism and
anti-life padded tower. But you might hear us. You just might.
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