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Original post made
on Aug 24, 2010
Thanks to the generous Friends of the Menlo Park Library for funding our book group so well and for so long.
Thanks to the community members who protested to the extent that the story about our wonderful book group actually made it into the Menlo Park Almanac.
We all recognize the importance of funding children's and teen programs--and if the $1200 it cost to run book group is put towards those programs, it would be great to know how they were applied.
Director Holmer has also informed me that should a volunteer step forward to lead a library based book group, the library will provide meeting space and publicity via the library Web site and bulletin board--should a leader produce flyers at their own cost.
What concerns me and should concern other community members is Director Holmer's continuous use of the word "I" as in her Almanac quote below. A library community is a "we" .
"Had I known that there was going to be such unhappiness, I certainly would have let them know before," she said, adding, "It wouldn't have made a difference in funding because I needed that money for other things."
By email? Holmer told the group leader she was history BY EMAIL? Words fail.
Thank for for your accurate, fair and thorough coverage of the dismal treatment given to the Menlo Park Book Group and Ms. Lauren John by the Director of the Menlo Park Public Library Susan Holmer. Anyone who has had the privilege of attending one of Lauren's book group meetings knows that she is a treasure. I cannot fathom why Ms. Holmer would treat her in such a shabby manner.
The Menlo Park Library is a precious public resource that helps create community. Ms. Holmer's leadership most emphatically does not advance that aim.
My thanks to the Friends of the Menlo Park Library for supporting the book group for so many years. I enthusiastically invite anyone who loves book discussions to join our new group at the Palo Alto Oshman Community Center.
It is sad to see the results of the disgraceful looting of the public coffers by our so-called public servants.
There's no question that the disbanding of the Menlo Park Library Book Club should have been handled in a more diplomatic manner. Those of us who were loyal members--and there were many-=will miss both our meetings and Lauren's enthusiastic and extremely competent leadership.
Are adult book readers less important to the library system than children and teens? The principal supporters and users of local libraries are the strengths of the community. Was any thought of these factors considered before canceling this 15 year old book club in such a shameful manner? Evidently not!
I'm simply appalled.
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