I feel that the editorial “Vamos a celebrar” by Andy Zagastizábal in the Sept. 21 JP Gazette represents a misunderstanding of the structure and intentions of the public library system. The sarcasm and unconstructive criticism in the editorial only serve to close avenues for meaningful dialogue. Furthermore, the implication that the programming specific to Hispanic Heritage Month was created out of obligation or in an attempt to impress bosses (“obligación, o para quedar bien con los jefes”) is an unfair assumption about the librarians of this branch. As a former staff member of the Jamaica Plain Branch Library, I have experienced first-hand the deep commitment of the event organizers to serving the community, though the process can be at times frustrating, discouraging or overwhelming.
The library is a public space that is dedicated to serving the information and communication needs of its neighborhood. Local library branches specifically require community involvement in order to make the best use of their space and resources. I am certain that the JP branch librarians are open and eager to hearing comments and suggestions for programming and resources if presented in a thoughtful and constructive manner.
Hollin Elizabeth Pagos