Airing the laundry

I know it's fashionable in most librarian circles to hate the Annoyed Librarian - he/she/it is soooo negative, or soooo reactionary, or some such. Of course, I take the "I never read the blog" statements with as many grains of salt with which I take "I never watch tv (except for certain PBS shows... documentaries... the occasional Iron Chef marathon... sports)" comments. If you know what AL is saying, you're reading the blog. One of the AL's overriding themes is that critical thinking about our profession is akin to airing the family's laundry in public.

A while ago I was involved in what could have been a controversial article in a national library-related publication. One of the darlings of my professional world was being called into question, and people were up in arms that the editor would dare to do this. The article was never released because of the pressure. No, there's no paper trail, and if I have any proof it's lost somewhere in my backed up files in cyberspace.

Here's the thing: we should publicly call into question our own deepest beliefs, personally and professionally. We should ask pointed questions about why we hold certain truths to be true, forcing ourselves and others to assess the situation. Perhaps we're wrong. Perhaps we've been right all along. But to not allow public questioning and comments? To say this piece of research or that trend doesn't seem quite right? That seems antithetical to being a librarian.

Doesn't it?

1 comment:

cafeshree said...

I always liked AL, making me think about things in a different light, a lot of times I agreed and a lot I didn't, but even when I didn't it was good to make me think about why. I had to cut back on reading AL because of a lot of the negativity, I was having enough of that at work I didn't need it online too.