As a longterm library observer and former librarian I have been saddened by the “the indefensible mess” in which the Indianapolis-Marion County Public Library finds itself. I join David Hoppe (Hoppe, Jan. 16-23) in his heart felt desire that the library recover. In spite of past stumbles, Indianapolis can be proud of a library that still has a core staff dedicated to public service and still delivers amazing resources to the public. IMCPL board member Jesse Lynch should be singled out for his courageous efforts to keep the library on an open and ethical course.
Libraries make important contributions to the success of a city and the quality of life a city offers. The newly opened Central Library is truly awe inspiring. I deeply regret the controversies that have overshadowed the aspiration.
Libraries should be the models for democratic ideals including the free exchange of ideas. There will be new opportunities for citizens to help shape the future of the library. I urge people to share their suggestions and concerns with library officials. I urge the library to restore an atmosphere where open expression of ideas is welcomed. I hope the public will help shape the future of the library by contacting library administration, including the board and its appointing bodies. There is a new team being formed to develop a strategic plan for the library. This may be the best forum for communicating ideas. And I call on those same groups to listen and respond in a fair and ethical manner. Thanks to Mr. Hoppe for starting the public dialogue that will move IMCPL forward to a better future serving the city.