Democracy, Diversity, and Discourse

“We can choose either to walk the high road of human brotherhood or to tread the low road of man's inhumanity to man.”

Martin Luther King Jr.

Taken from Stride Toward Freedom published 1958.

Statement on Race and Social Equity - Urban Libraries Council

In a strong act of commitment to a more equitable society, 173 public libraries across North America have signed the Urban Libraries Council’s Statement on Race and Social Equity. This statement serves as a baseline upon which libraries can build policies and actions that make their communities more inclusive and just. We are proud to be one of the libraries that have signed this statement. Read the full statement here.

Democracy "Now is the time to make real the promises of democracy." - Martin Luther King, Jr.

Diversity "Diversity is about all of us, and about us having to figure out how to walk through this world together." - Jacqueline Woodson.

Discourse "Mankind's greatest achievements have come about by talking, and its greatest failures by not talking... All we need to do is make sure we keep talking." - Stephen Hawking.

Libraries are open places where all aspects of society can come together to find the answers they need. This has not always been the case, unfortunately. We hope to take the lessons from the past and use them as our guide moving forward.

In moving forward, it is clear that having an informed electorate, an appreciation of our country's unique diversity, and a desire to keep talking and understanding our differences are vital to ensuring that we are taking the correct path.

“Where, after all, do universal human rights begin? In small places, close to home—so close and so small that they cannot be seen on any map of the world. Yet they are the world of the individual person: the neighborhood he lives in; the school or college he attends; the factory, farm or office where he works. Such are the places where every man, woman and child seeks equal justice, equal opportunity, equal dignity without discrimination. Unless these rights have meaning there, they have little meaning anywhere. Without concerted citizen action to uphold them close to home, we shall look in vain for progress in the larger world.”

Eleanor Roosevelt

First lady and UN delegate, taken from an United Nations Address, March 27, 1958.