...awww sweetie, we have to go to New Jersey to get you a book to read.
NOTE: I was exaggerating about there being more crackhouses in Philadelphia than libraries. There are 3 more libraries in the city than crackhouses.
The past few days, America’s been in a heart-felt swoon over the tender Dad/Daughter moment captured forever on camera when the little girl tossed a foul ball Dad caught at Philadelphia Phillies baseball game back.
I’ll be the first to admit that it’s a sweet story, the world doesn’t get enough of this kind of stuff…
Okay, Awww Time over, let’s get back to basics.
The sweet Philly Dad/Daughter story has gotten far more play than something that I’ve been totally disgusted about since I first heard about it earlier this week, the threatened closing of every library in the city of Philadelphia. I didn’t stutter. Every.Library.In.The.City. Ben “The Man-Whore” Franklin has got to be spinning in his grave over this.
The following is the text of the notice posted by the Free Library:
All Free Library of Philadelphia Branch, Regional and Central Libraries Closed Effective Close of Business October 2, 2009
All Free Library of Philadelphia Customers,
We deeply regret to inform you that without the necessary budgetary legislation by the State Legislature in Harrisburg, the City of Philadelphia will not have the funds to operate our neighborhood branch libraries, regional libraries, or the Parkway Central Library after October 2, 2009.
Specifically, the following will take effect after the close of business, October 2, 2009:
All branch and regional library programs, including programs for children and teens, after school programs, computer classes, and programs for adults, will be cancelled
All Parkway Central Library programs, including children programs, programs to support small businesses and job seekers, computer classes and after school programs, will be cancelled. We are exploring the possibility of relocating the Philadelphia Author Series programs to other non-library facilities.
All library visits to schools, day care centers, senior centers and other community centers will cease.
All community meetings at our branch and regional libraries, and the Parkway Central Library, will be cancelled.
All GED, ABE and ESL programs held at Free Library branches will be discontinued, students should contact their teacher to see if other arrangements are being made.
In addition, all library materials will be due on October 1, 2009. This will result in a diminishing borrowing period for books and other library materials, beginning September 11, 2009. No library materials will be able to be borrowed after September 30, 2009.
Even as we remain hopeful that the State Legislature will act and pass the enabling funding legislation, we wanted to notify all of our customers of this very possible outcome. If you have any questions about impacts to Free Library services, call 215-686-5322, or visit the Free Library of Philadelphia website at www.freelibrary.org. If you have questions about changes to City services, or if you want to be kept informed about this situation, we encourage you to contact Philly 311 by calling 3-1-1 between the hours of 8am and 8 pm Monday-Friday, and 9am-5pm Saturdays, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit the City of Philadelphia website at http://www.phila.gov.
We thank you for your understanding, patience, and continued support of the Free Library of Philadelphia during these difficult times.
Siobhan Reardon, President and Director, Free Library of Philadelphia
That’s most digusting thing I’ve heard since FLAVOR OF LOVE got the renewed for a second season.
Reading is funk-a-mental, yeah, boyeeeeee!
But, wait, it’s gets worse:
Besides closing libraries, the (Philadephia mayor, Michael) Nutter administration’s so-called Plan C doomsday budget includes eliminating court-system funding, shutting down all recreation centers and laying off up to 3,000 workers, including police and firefighters.
Layoff notices could go out on Friday if the Legislature does not approve the city’s request for a temporary sales-tax hike and a two-year deferral of payments into the pension fund.
Is it just me or does all this dumb s*it sound like an episode of IT’S ALWAYS SUNNY IN PHILADELPHIA? (The Gang Gets Frank Elected Mayor & He Almost Instantly Runs The City Into The Ground)
...that reminds me, the 4th season of this great show begins TONIGHT! There's irony for yo' ass.
How did it come to this? Why does it seem the city of Philadelphia’s powers-that-be-doing-something-what-I-don’t-know have said “Fu*k it! Let’s get out of here and let the Barksdale and Stansfield fight it out and the winner take over this dump”? (Why am I making references to THE WIRE, a show that didn’t even take place in Philly? Bear with me, kids, ol’ Unca T. Troy will reveal all shortly)
I know that the financial crisis is the favorite excuse but this mess sounds like there were issues in this town long before it got bad everywhere. Plus, I know the city is getting a good chunk of that Government Stimulus caysh. So what’s really going on?
It doesn’t help when you have mayors who are more interested in standing in line to be the first to get a IPhone or throwing a screening party for THE WIRE (see picture below of some of the show’s cast with one of their biggest fans, the goofball mayor dude in the center…see, I told you I would explain all) not because of anything remotely having to do with anything moral (it was a show where the main focus was on crime, corruption and more crime) or the city (the show was set in Baltimore, for crying out loud) but because the Mayor “was a huge fan”. (Plans to have Cylons come to city hall to screen the last episode of BATTLESTAR GALACTICA were cancelled because that would have just been silly)
Where’s Stringer Bell when you really need him?
So now the plan is to threaten to do the unthinkable and hope that somebody blinks and gives them the money they want to pay the bills until the next time the city has f*cked up the budget and needs to make more threats.
Next time, threaten to close the orphanages and sell the kids into slavery in China or get really gangsta and say that you have no choice but to name Philadelphia Eagle Micheal Vick the head of the Philadelphia Animal Welfare Society (PAWS). You’d then get so much money, you wouldn’t have to worry about the city’s budget for the next 200 years…at least.
CHECK THIS OUT:
#savephillylibraries on Twitter
The Free Libraries Of Philadelphia website
The City Of Philadelphia Facebook Page (I ain’t saying it would be right to bum rush the page and tell the mayor and his flunkies what you think of even threatening to close up the libraries…but I’d understand)
It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia FX website
UPDATE: a few hours after I posted this, the Pennsylvania state senate passed a bill that would save all the jobs and the libraries that were being threatened in Philadelphia. You’re welcome, Philadelphia. Now do the right thing and get a mayor in that town who won’t hold threaten to throw public services under the bus with the quickness and find some actual solutions to why your city government is such a clusterf*ck.