Saturday, November 16, 2013


Thibodaux branch
If you live in Lafourche Parish, Louisiana, please go vote against de-funding parish libraries to build a new jail.
Library funding in Lafourche Parish, Louisiana, may be diverted to a new jail thanks to a legislator who doesn't approve of the library's programs. Jail proponent and chair of the Lafourche Parish Council Lindel Toups supports a ballot measure that would take funding away from libraries.

“They’re teaching Mexicans how to speak English,” Toups told the local Tri-Parish Times, referencing Biblioteca Hispana, a Spanish-language section of one of the nine branch libraries. “Let that son of a bitch go back to Mexico. There’s just so many things they’re doing that I don’t agree with. ... Them junkies and hippies and food stamps [recipients] and all, they use the library to look at drugs and food stamps [on the Internet]. I see them do it.”

"We are here to serve all of the residents of Lafourche Parish," Library System Director Laura Sanders told the Los Angeles Times. "It doesn't matter what ethnicity they are -- we serve them all."
The comments by Chairman Toups suggest that he would prefer people in the parish not to have access to learning materials and activities, even as it's obvious the chairman's grammar could use a bit of polishing.  I'm sure the library has books that teach grammar to people whose first language is English.  That's not to mention the expletive.  Oddly enough, in my visits to the Thibodaux branch, I don't see what Toups sees.

So, my fellow citizens, please go vote.

Update on the vote to defund libraries:
John Chrastka’s brigade of pissed-off librarians came into the game late in the Louisiana parish ballot referendum defunding libraries for jail money. 

But the social media blitz appears to have paid dividends, both for library funding in Lafourche parish (Louisiana’s term for a county) and for the profile of his political action committee, EveryLibrary. Voters on Saturday rejected by about a five to four margin a ballot initiative to cut library funding to finance the construction of a new jail, a move that would have quickly sent the libraries into deficit.
Excellent.  Folks around here like their public libraries.  Lindel Toups' inflammatory comments, which the newspaper was wise enough to print, probably went a way to help defeat the ballot initiative.  Toups would do well to remember that the libraries have computers and access to the internet, so word gets around.


  1. Also, as noted by Ms. Sanders in the L.A. Times article, "for Toups, the issue of the jail's condition is a personal one. 'He does have family members that are incarcerated,' she says.

    "According to Houma Today, Toups' son and grandson were arrested in 2009 and charged with possession of methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia."

    Toups may be motivated by a desire to keep local voters uninformed:

    "Lafourche Parish is in the southern part of Louisiana, to the west of New Orleans. About 43% of its households do not have Internet access at home, while the library provides free Internet access with 186 computers. More than half of the Parish's residents, 53%, hold library cards, and in 2013, the library system has served more than 280,000 visitors."

    1. Thanks. I wanted to quote more, but I didn't want to go beyond fair use. You did the rest for me. I loved Ms Sanders riposte.

      People around here like their libraries. The wording of the ballot was somewhat confusing, so I hope voters didn't vote the wrong because of the muddled language.

  2. Wait, this is not a joke or maybe a script from Saturday Night Live . . . ? "Let that son of a bitch go back to Mexico" - ?? He said that out loud to a reporter - and the paper printed it??

    What times we live in. This is beyond the pale. What hope is there for good government with sons of bitches like Toups in control of it?

    1. Russ, Toups said that to a reporter, and it was a good thing that the newspaper published his inflammatory words, which probably helped defeat the ballot initiative. Toups should have known better than to introduce the initiative in the first place, because people around here like their public libraries.

  3. Doesn't sound like Mr. Toups ever spent much time in the library. And perhaps breathing in all the meth fumes from his son and grandson's lab has rendered him incapable of even remembering why we have libraries.

    No matter how much information we can retrieve from the internet there is nothing as satisfying as a really good book.

    1. Bonnie, I'll wager Mr Toups had no idea his bigoted and ignorant comments would go national. Of course, he may not even care.

      I love books, but I spend too much time on the internet, and it cuts into my reading time. :-(

    2. Sigh! Unfortunately he probably doesn't care and probably has no idea how bigoted and ignorant his comments are.

      As to your time on the internet. Personal blessing for me. Write on!


Anonymous commenters, please sign a name, any name, to distinguish one anonymous commenter from another. Thank you.