Saturday, January 5, 2008

Message from BWS Johnson, Guest Librarian

We've been waiting for you to join us.

We share your oppression, but we share your strength. It is safe here to voice all those things that we know are very right, but society tells us are very dangerous.

You are free here.

You are equal here.

These at long last are not the lies you have heard your whole life or since you discovered you were not like everyone else.

We want to come together.

None of us are perfect, but if we all share the good, we can be.

We can learn.

We really don't want those barriers anymore.

When you choose to be a Librarian, you are choosing to really serve and genuinely give back to the community.

Yes, most of any given day, you will just do your job. You will get people the hard information they are looking for. But every now and then, someone will share something of themselves with you. Or you will share something of yourself with them. We are all us. When it happens, it is magic.

You are choosing to teach. You are choosing to share yourself. You are brave. This is not easy.

You are deciding that you want to leave ignorance behind, and that you alone are not the only one that wants to. You are deciding to tear down those gates, to get rid of those fences of separation, to smash that glass ceiling.

You want to believe that anyone at anytime can learn anything, and the more you see it unfold in front of your eyes, the more you will come to accept it.

That anyone really can recognize their potential and act on it.

We know more than anyone else how lofty those goals are, but if we take a Patron by the hand and take the time to walk with them, they will see the good in us and they will share their good in turn.

These things take time to have. Pain takes time to mend.

But if you want to take this up, you can. We want to help. If you do, too, then join us.

Talk with us. Listen to us. We are all related, and we know it.

Contributed by BWS Johnson
University of Illinois
MLS, Class of 2003
E-mail: mhelman(at)illinoisalumni.org

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