Wednesday, October 27, 2010


Last week, a Republican candidate could not believe her opponent's claim that "separation of church of state" was in the First Amendment.  During a news story on this debate, another conservative candidate said that the phrase "separation of church and state" came from a Fascist leader.

So, I looked it up.  Of course the words "separation of church and state" are not in the Constitution.  The Constitution says "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances." 

THOMAS JEFFERSON used the words "separation of church from state" in a letter to a church that expressed concern that the new government might infringe on religious freedoms.

During his presidency, Ulysses S.Grant made a speech where he suggested that church and state be forever separated.

Neither Jefferson nor Grant were known to be fascists - or Nazis as that conservative candidate claimed.

Other stuff that people believe that are not true.  Our taxes have NOT gone up since Obama was elected.  98% of working Americans have received a cut in their federal income taxes.  We just get a little bit more in each check, rather than a single check.

The "bailout" will cost our children and grandchildren billions. The "bailout" will cost the government 1/10th of what it was estimated to cost and several large financial institutions have already repaid the money they received.  This cost is less than what we paid out in the 1980s.

The inheritance tax will wipe out everything you've worked for.  Well, yeah if you're worth more than 3.5 million.  I'm not worth that much!!!

Why do people just assume that candidates that shout the loudest or make the funniest insulting remarks are telling the truth?  Why don't people check the facts?  There are objective books and websites that ferret out the truth.  Read the Constitution yourselves, people.  Don't believe every nasty thing people tell you.  AND do your homework BEFORE you vote.  Not after loudmouth know-nothings get in and make things worse.

Oh and the "bailout"?   Bush - a conservative - was in office when that was voted in.  And that's the truth. 

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Teen Library Events?

Howdy strangers!  Long time and all that, eh?
   Some random thoughts on library events for teens.
   So, in the summer I asked a bunch of teens, "What nights - or days during the school year- are best for teen events?"  And the answer I got was "Never on a school night."  "Saturdays in the day - not so good."

Well, this leaves me in a bind since the library is only open Mon. through Thur. nights and it closes at 5 on Fri. and Sat.  So, I countered, "Would you come out for an event on a Friday night?"
And the answer was an enthusiastic, "Yes!"
OR so I remember. 

Last night, I held my first ever school year "after hours" teen program on a Friday.  (I have held two Saturday night programs during the school year in my 2 decades at this library.  They were not well attended.  Summer Saturdays are better.)
Last night, the presenter did a fine job of marshaling the creative juices of the audience and we wrote the first verse and chorus of a song! The event was fun and well prepared and carried out.  A Songwriting Workshop with a knowledgeable and experienced musician, who has a degree in music and broadcasting experience - this should bring in a lot of teens, right?. How many teens signed up?  A mere handful, alas.  How many showed up?  Half of those who signed up.  There was food and I gave out door prizes - including a guitar strap with the name of the band, "My Chemical Romance" etched on it.  (Oh and a pirate pistol!!! and Burt's Bees lip gloss and a couple of books and some other stuff.) 

I'm blaming the lack of teen presence on football.  And in January, the excuse will be the weather.   In the spring, there is soccer and SAT prep and prom and date nights and the mall.  There's always the mall.  I'm thinking that the library is just not where the teens in our library's service area want to be "after hours".  UNLESS, I let them dress up in costumes and scare little kids....OR stay up all night reading and making me insane.    Hmmm, insurance nightmare?  OR mental nightmare? Which should I choose?

It's a conundrum.  That's what it is.  HOWEVER, the lyrics of the song will be posted on this blog on Monday because they were GOOD (if I do say so myself).  Perhaps, we can have a contest to see who can write the best second and third verses.  I recorded most of the song with my little pocket sized video camera and if the musician agrees, I might post that here as well.  Just so you know how the melody goes.

 In the meantime, I will continue my attempts to offer meaningful, fun teen events that teens will actually attend. Wish me luck.
Oh, I want to make sure you don't get the wrong idea. Our library is FULL of teens, reading, working on school stuff, and volunteering.  They are in and out of the YS office all the time.  If they can get volunteer hours for an event, I can gather a huge bunch of them.  But no credit, no show. Sigh.  What happened to FUN?