No Wi-Fi at the library

Dear Editor:A few weeks ago I somehow got the courage to go to one of the Downey City Council meetings that was hosted on a Tuesday night. It was my first time seeing how plans and projects were approved by council members and it was also my first time looking at how people stand in front of a waist-level podium and voice their concerns about pertinent issues. I was the last one to speak I was shaky and a nervous wreck not to mention the fact that I looked like a bum in my gray slacks and blue/yellow tennis shoes. If you also throw in the fact that I have a fear of speaking in front of people, this should have been a recipe for disaster before I even stepped into city hall that night. However, what I had to speak about was more important than myself. The issue at hand was the lack of wireless Internet at the Downey City Library. How is it even remotely possible that the Downey library, a central hub of tutors, students, educators, retirees, and avid book readers has rejected plans to implement Wi-Fi connectivity? You never build a home without a bathroom, you don't build a car without air bags and you don't have a respected library that is supposed to be a facilitator of information to NOT have wireless internet! I don't get it. I myself am a tutor and it is so difficult to not have the Internet available for my laptop and I find it frustrating that the librarians are just as frustrated as I am and also embarrassed that city hall looks as if allowing the Information Super Highway into our library is somehow an issue to avoid and even reject. My students will benefit from Wi-Fi because they allow me to connect to interactive media online and find other ways to stimulate their minds rather than bore them with tedious pencil and paper exercises. Today's students want to be entertained while learning because learning is fun when taught correctly. Wireless Internet allows me, other tutors, students and others to open a whole new world of information that our library may not have and why city hall shuts the door on that new world I have absolutely no idea. We need to push this issue and push it hard otherwise Wi-Fi will once again be a rejected proposal not only this year but probably for another 10 years. I want to mention that when I finished my little speech in front of the council members, councilman Mario Guerra told me, "I agree with you 100 percent, Edgar." That felt good but I hope we can work together with Mr. Guerra to make Wi-Fi possible for our beloved library. - Edgar Espinoza, Downey

********** Published: February 19, 2010 - Volume 8 - Issue 44