I don’t live in McAllen, Texas so moving the library has no consequence to me. Up until a few years ago, the Edinburg Public Library – now the Dustin Michael Sekula Memorial Library – was in a nice distance that I can walk to whenever I wanted to. When they opened the new one, it’s too far to walk to without feeling the burn when you get there. And even then, during the spring and summer months, it’s a literal hell. There’s my library story anyway.
It now appears that the city of McAllen decided that it was high time to move their library from their downtown – errm, “art district” – location to an old Walmart building simply because they wish to expand. During this hoopla of thinking the city has any control over the actual city, people are upset with the idea of moving the important corner stone of the city’s art district way north of this urban donut. I don’t see the problem, but then again, I’m not a McAllen citizen and I only dabble in their art district – however, my absence has made me miss my poet friends at Art Expressions – but I see no huge problem here. If a library is to grow, it’s to grow somewhere else. I know it might have some damaging effects on the image of an art district and it’ll be a great loss to it, but moving Edinburg’s library to a new location only made a great loss to the kids who live in the area with parents who recite their favorite dumbfuck American line, “We’ll wait ’til the movie comes out.”
Perhaps I’m being too jaded in the situation. Again, I am not from McAllen and my opinion matters not. However, if it’s worth something, the library in the art district should stay open, even if a new one is built. I’d always thought the Valley needed an independent library – I mean, think about all the zines/chapbooks they could collect from local writers, poets, insane lunatics-with-way-too-much-time-on-their-hands they could collect. Now that’s something to invest some money in.