My woke local library
I took time out during a weekday, two weeks ago, to visit my local library for the first time in many months. I know they'd already changed the name. It used to be called the "Cameron Village Regional Library," but apparently Cameron was a very bad man, a long time ago. The name change, however, came because owners of the shopping center, which was built on land owned by people who had held slaves, chose to drop its connection to the Cameron family. Hmmm...I wonder how many properties, owned by people who had once held slaves, the shopping center owners have lived on.
Ultimately, the Wake County Board of Commissioners voted unanimously to rename the library the "Oberlin Regional Library." Is that not a heartwarming move?
As I stroll around the library, I notice numerous changes. There are many more large-print books. The youth section is larger as well and offers a variety of woke titles that, in some instances, would alarm even the most liberal of parents.
In browsing the audiobook shelves, I see that this section is a fraction of what it used to be. Most everyone has switched to downloads. The physical CDs, the kind I like to pop into my car player, are becoming rare, but isn't it safer to insert one into the CD player than fiddle with one's cellphone to air a podcast?
At the librarian's desk, I see all manner of flyers and announcements. One stands out. It is a sheet that lists all library activities for the coming month. This list interests me because one never knows — there might be a visiting author or some type of how-to program that is highly worthwhile.
Closed in Observation
In the middle of this sheet is this statement: "The library will be closed on June 19 in observance of Juneteenth." Juneteenth, bad grammar and all, is a federal holiday ordained in 2021, commemorating "the emancipation of enslaved African Americans." Wait, the Emancipation Proclamation occurred on January 1, 1863. Did I miss something? The library will be partially open on July 4. Is that now a lesser holiday?
Juneteenth is acknowledged on the anniversary of the order by Major General Gordon Granger proclaiming freedom for enslaved people in Texas on June 19, 1865. So we ignore the Emancipation Proclamation?
What about Martin Luther King, Jr.'s birthday, celebrated on the third Monday in January? It is now a federal holiday. Lincoln's and Washington's birthdays in mid-February used to be known by every school-aged kid as I was growing up. These birthdays have now been homogenized and combined, and called Presidents Day, with not even 1 in 10 Americans knowing what that relates to.
We have a whole month devoted to black history, each and every day in February. Depending on where you turn, you'll gain news and information about black authors, politicians, poets, cooks, freedom fighters, soldiers, actors, inventors, and pioneers of industry.
Perhaps we ought to have Black History Month for a few more years, but eventually, it needs to fade and simply be part of American history. Otherwise, are we also going to have a Hispanic history month, Jewish month, Asian month, Muslim month, and so on? Are not all the historical experiences, and contributions, by all these groups simply a part of American history?
Years ago, when I lived in D.C., one of the morning radio shock jocks made an inexcusable joke for which he should have been fired, but he was not. This was long before the wokesters took over the media, and he knew what the boundaries were. In observation of Martin Luther King's birthday, he said, it's too bad four more civil rights leaders weren't slain so that we could have a whole week off. A terrible statement by any means, but he thought it was funny.
The odd thing is, at the rate of new woke holidays, it wouldn't be surprising if the whole year was eventually filled up. Every group that has ever been aggrieved in one way or another, at any time, gets a holiday, or a week, or why not a month?
So let's have a short people's day, a nearsighted people's day, and on and on, until every single person in America, except white males, Christians, and Jews, is covered. Let's devote a whole month to those who have a different sexual outlook, inclination, or orientation from everyone else's. Let's hold it in, say, June. Let's call it "Pride Month." What do you think of that?