Thursday, July 27, 2017

The Disability Community in the Library: The Class

A cartoon cat in a space helmet with a key, emerging from a fancy door with a galaxy pattern behind it.
(Accessibility series logo by Chris at On a Roll Designs)
(who also wrote this amazing post)

A year ago, after hearing about the massacre at Sagamihara  I felt a lot of silence from, like, everyone, but also specifically from my online library communities. A lot of feelings I've had in libraries since I began came to a very abrupt head.

I decided that the hurt I felt was powerful enough to identify myself plainly as the disability killjoy I've always been so scared of being.

Never feeling "disabled enough" to identify as disabled, and not abled enough to shake a person's hand, I fought my entire life to hold onto the illusion  of a modicum of abled privilege that passing gets me; only to live through experiences that reinforced, again and again, how little society regards me once it finds out I tricked it and ~SURPRISE~ I'm not the "normal" person you thought I was and HERE I AM, IN YOUR SPACE. OOPS. (oh, and also how little it regards PWD in general, usually while "passing").

No more of that. After a summer of near constant grief I realized I had no choice, as someone with privilege/power both socially and professionally, but to talk about my disability as openly as I could and amplify the existing voices of the disability community within the world of libraries. I was new, and learning, and I'm still far from calling myself an activist, but it was all I could think of to do.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

2017 Summer Reading Videos

Baby sloth sitting in a tea cup.
photo by Sam Trull of the Sloth Institute
Remember a few months ago when I put out a call for contributors for Summer Reading hype videos? Perhaps understandably, I didn't get quite the response this year than I did last year. But did want to share with you the submissions I DID receive, in case you need a pick-me-up to get you through the last few weeks:

Abby from Abby the Librarian talks about finding awesome moments to hold on to.

Rebecca from Hafuboti left us in stitches with a video about existential crises.

And lastly, Julie from Storytime Underground and Tales for the Tiny created a parody song about the trials of SRP (Admitting that I felt 900 years old for asking: this is a parody of Lady Gaga song. In case you are also 900 years old.).

A big THANK YOU this year to our contributors, and a big HANG IN THERE to all you staff on the front line of SRP. Your patrons are so glad you're there and I'm grateful for you.

Also, have some more sloths.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Tells, Safety, and the Tenets of the Profession

Black text on a grey background reads,
"Tells, Safety, and the Tenets of the Profession"

Should we do outreach to hate groups?
No.


The above was originally the entirety of a post I wanted to make about a comment thread in a library Facebook group this weekend. Some participants seemed to argue that yes, it is reasonable and appropriate to ask your outreach librarian who identifies with intersecting marginalized populations to cold-call or visit an organization whose mission is to promote the eradication of those populations from America.


I'm not linking it here because I don't want to exploit or endanger the Original Poster, who was sincerely looking for help. Additionally, I encountered two additional threads in other groups that have mirrored past conversations I’ve seen in list-servs, on Twitter, and in real life, so clearly this is not an isolated incident. My post here can’t be as simple or snarky as I originally intended.