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Rock Street, San Francisco
Rock Street, San Francisco

OLD BOOKS ARE DANGEROUS? It was November 29, 2011, Tuesday, around quarter to nine, I was in the Department of Languages, looking out of the window, when I saw a youth pulling a wheelbarrow. I looked intently at its content and I saw they were books. I knew what’s going on! The library was once again throwing away old books which it labeled as “condemned”. CONDEMNED! What a description?! The books were condemned in such a way that they would be discarded and burned without the knowledge of many students and faculty of the school.

Why is this? I really wondered what is the reason or reasons for this decision and action. According to one of my friends and classmates in college, the books are burned because they are old and the knowledge they contain are already obsolete. Therefore it is dangerous to give them to teachers and students because the knowledge they will acquire from reading the books are not anymore reliable and accurate in the present time. Is this indeed true? Or judicious?

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Do old books really contain obsolete information that offering them to anyone is perilous? There are fields of discipline in this world which knowledge seldom change or don’t change at all. Say for instance, literature and history. The stories found in literature books are never changed especially if they are already classical. So is it dangerous to offer old books in literature? Do Shakespeare’s sonnets change with time? Do Iliad and Odyssey get new as trends and technology do? They don’t! and that is very obvious.

Now why don’t they (those who decide to discard and burn the books secretly) let those books in literature to be used by poor students who cannot afford to buy books due to severe poverty yet have the enthusiasm to be intelligent and competitive? Also do with history books. Does it mean that since we are already in the twenty-first century, history books that are written in the twentieth century not advisable to be used and be read by students? Why? Do the events in history change as time changes? Do the events in “Merry England” change according to century? Never! This is utter foolishness! hrowing away old books in history and literature which actually can still be used by poor students. Or why don’t they give them as gifts to students living and studying in remote areas? At least something good has been done with the books. These persons who decide to discard and burn books just because they are old don’t know how hard it is for others to acquire them. Furthermore, perhaps, they don’t love books that’s why they don’t feel any remorse in discarding those boos. How about the United States of America? It is a country much, much richer than the Philippines.

Yet it does not waste books. On the contrary, they used old books to help other country. Don’t the Philippines receive discarded books from it? Our country is so eager to take yet so selfish to give. In addition, burning books is against the ethics because they are intellectual property of the authors; of men! And burning them is destroying property. And destroying property is killing the owner of the property. ARE THERE GRAMMATICAL ERRORS? Hahaha! I wrote this for nothing. It’s just that I was not doing anything. I wrote this very quickly without thinking of editing.

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