Wednesday, June 10, 2009

by the book

Did you know that the Library of Congress has investigators? They occasionally have to go to dangerous neighborhoods to issue warrants and arrest suspects and so, for the past 15 years, the investigators have all carried a firearm for their own safety.

Until now.

I wonder what other little gun control surprises might be lurking in the 1000+ pages of that gigantic spending bill the Democrats passed last March - would have been nice if someone had read it before they signed away our liberty.

(special thanks to reader Willorith and blogger Top of the Chain for the tip!)

Also? These armed library investigators reminded me of this... Fun! Super secret, extra deadly librarians!


Alan said...

I think all librarians should be armed.

Along with everyone else.

Anonymous said...

And I think most federal agencies ought to be *disarmed*. If they need firepower, they can call on the local Sheriff's office to accompany them.

One agency down, many (too many!) to go.


Ride Fast said...

I'm with Alan on this one.

Incidentally, what do Library of Congress Investigators investigate?

Library of Congress card fraud?
Overdue copies of the constitution?
Congress critters caught (gasp) reading?

Joanna said...

I'm with the librarians. The LoC is one federal agency I can really get behind. Plus, if you read the article, they investigate things like child pornography and identity theft ("abuses of the Library of Congress"). They're part of the U.S. Marshals. So, yeah, I'm fine with them having guns.

zeeke42 said...

I disagree with Anonymous. Federal agents are people too, and they have just as much right to self defense as I do. They just need to be held to the same legal standard as I am.

Old NFO said...

Feds want the same thing everyone else wants... to go home at night.

Assrot said...

I think every law abiding citizen should be armed. Having said that, I'd like to know WTF the Library of Congress or any other library for that matter needs investigators for.

I mean really. It seems like a lot of trouble and expense just to get back a book. I'd think it would be more cost effective to ban the person that stole the book, buy a new book and get rid of the "investigators" altogether.

What a joke. It makes me think of the Seinfeld episode where the library had some guy investigating a book that was checked out 20 years ago. What is cheaper? 20 years of paying an investigator or buying a new book for $50?

I'm not a librarian so maybe I'm missing something here. 'Splain it to me Breda.



Top of the Chain said...


That 70 or 80 year old out of print reference book that someone stole means you or I can't reference that book until it is retrieved. Also, some rare book dealer might know a certain book is there and would steal the copy to sell off to some collector.

Joanna said...

What Top of the Chain said.

I'll never forget the day I was shelving at my college library and came across a book, just out on the shelf, that was seriously 400 years old. Why it was even in GenPop was beyond me. We also had whole collections that were 200 years old or older, and whole personal libraries that had been assembled over a lifetime and willed to us. That's why libraries have investigators.

Mark Alger said...

I can't argue with the librarians being armed. They are, after all, members of We the (Little) People, and have a constitutionally-protected right to keep and bear arms.

But I find myself mentally running down the provisions of the Constitution, wondering (as I am wont to do) which one it is that gives the United States government police powers.


Willorith said...

LOCIS - more letters than NCIS. Tom Selleck leads a crack team of special agents including a babe on loan from the Turkish Library of Antiquities.

Each week the team solves library crime and spotlights a local library system where the especially brilliant small town (Cleveland?) librarian adds particularly important unique skills and knowledge to the investigation, wrapping up the case with a dramatic shootout. "At least the bullet didn't hit Michaux's Sylva of North America."

Locis agents will keep their guns on their hip, not in their desk drawers. Always ready for action, or at least a stern Shush

Jeffrey Quick said...

The emotional reaction is "Some librarians are more equal than others", since neither Breda nor I can carry at work. OTOH, these guys aren't librarians, not even in the non-ALA "we'll count the paraprofessionals too" sense; they're Susine-Americans. And you don't give up your Constitutional rights just because you work for the gooferment.

Lorimor said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
SoupOrMan said...

Whatever they're armed with is suppressed, right?

Eric said...

Since they work for a library, does this mean they can't use holsters and instead have to use hollowed out books? :-)

Anonymous said...

"They cited an apparent "separation of powers" concern -- the library's investigators are deputized by the U.S. Marshals, which falls under the executive branch, but they investigate abuses in the Library of Congress, which falls under the legislative branch."

All of the hanky-panky that the executive and legislative branches have been up with increasing frequency lately and this is what they have a problem with?

Dave R. said...

Well, good. **** em. Some counts put the number of armed federal law enforcement officers at 60,000, spread out over 45 agencies. The Border Patrol and the FBI I understand, but the National Park Service and the Library of Congress don't need their own in house police forces. They could call the the US Marshalls or the local sheriff if it weren't about special privileges.

To the "feds just want to go home at night"/cops just want to go home at night, fine, but the rest of us just want to go home at the end of their shift also. If they just want to carry for self defense, that should be legalized for the general population, not be a special privilege granted by stretching the definition of law enforcement officer.