Howard County Times

Children need to be taught to 'choose civility' at Miller Branch [Letter]

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Something has changed in this country or maybe it's Howard County but the image of the library as a quiet place has changed radically.

Maybe it's a different generation or cultural differences that influence what is happening.


But have you been in the children's section of the wonderful, new Miller Library? The disrespect for others and the property itself are disturbing.

At what point do we just shrug, look the other way and accept such disrespect?


People talk on cell phones, oblivious to the noise they create. Children run screaming through the aisles and over furniture, as if at a playground and probably at home. Books and CDs are strewn about and walked on.

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Parents, staff and other patrons say and do little or nothing. Some are bothered by it but seem resigned.

I think the question falls on all of us as to why this is OK. As in other areas of our lives, we have had to find our voices when something is wrong and speak up.

The only cause that comes to my mind about this new trend is a lack of respect.

Library staff used to enforce a certain atmosphere that I'm not saying is what we go back to but it does seem to me that it should be in their job description that they help maintain an atmosphere of respect.

Libraries are such a vibrant hub and resource for the whole community. The Miller Library is so exceptional. It is well used and appreciated but I think addressing the few who need a kind reminder to think of others would make it ideal.

Ruth Rudolph

Ellicott City