Why We Need Government: To Prevent 9-Year-Olds From Running Free Little Lending Libraries


Advances in providing for the education and enlightenment of the general public, from the city of Leawood, Kansas, as reported by KMBC TV:

Leawood city leaders have told Spencer Collins that he has to stop sharing books with his neighbors.

Collins had to take down his little free library, essentially a communal bookshelf, on Wednesday. The motto of the sharing center had been "take a book, leave a book," but Collins learned there's a lot less give and take in city government….

"When we got home from vacation, there was a letter from the city of Leawood saying that it was in code violation and it needed to be down by the 19th or we would receive a citation," said Spencer's mother, Sarah Collins. 

Leawood said the little house is an accessory structure. The city bans buildings that aren't attached to someone's home.

The hand of government is wise, and sympathetic, but it must be firm:

"We empathize with them, but we still have to follow the rules," said Richard Coleman of the City of Leawood. "We need to treat everybody the same. So we can't say if somebody files a complaint but we like the little libraries—we think they're cute—so we ignore it. We can't do that."

Because Leawood is a community that cares about culture, but also about safety: "Leawood said it has received two complaints about Spencer Collins' library."

Meanwhile, the utopian anarchists in neighboring community Prairie Valley "told KMBC 9's Haley Harrison that the city simply doesn't enforce codes that would restrict little free libraries."