Library Card Registration Day
Amazon has been under fire for quite some time now for several reasons, mainly for their questionable business practices. This became especially clear to me when Amazon’s backroom dealings with New York City for its new headquarters was rebuked by New Yorkers. Initially, New York officials were willing to give $1.4 Billion in tax credits and an extra $1.1 Billion in grants based on the number of employees hired. Recently, an article by the WSJ found that the deal was worse then people thought. Part of the deal also included making Governors Island an island retreat for Amazon employees and an extra 800 million in incentives.
Reports have continued to come out about the horrible work conditions of warehouse workers, the destructive nature of amazon packaging on the environment, the terrible environmental impact of one-day shipping, its partnership with big oil and how Amazons business model undermines local businesses. These sorts of things aren't unique to Amazon though. Many companies operate similarly. With how seemingly ubiquitous Amazon has become, what can we do if we aren't ok with this?
January 11th is the first-ever National Fuck Amazon Day started by Noname, a Chicago rapper, and her book club Noname’s Book Club. Started in July of 2019, the club strives to uplift the voices of people of color by recommending two books every month. The book club recommends readers get these books from local libraries or small booksellers. As an extra F-you to companies like Amazon, Noname encourages that people get library cards to take advantage of the free resources public libraries offer.
In addition to recommending books by people of color, the club also has meetups to discuss the monthly picks. This is meant to create a space for people to have discussions about topics that can be sensitive or difficult to have over a screen. For January the picks are Die Nigger Die by H. Rap Brown, Jamil al-Amin and Sabrina and Corina by Kali Fajardo-Anstine
But what I find incredibly inspiring, is how Noname is also setting up chapters for her book club in prisons to help inmates, where many books by black authors are censored or banned by prisons. She can do this through small-dollar donations on Patreon.
So, if your blood is boiling over how modern corporations can be so heartless or you want to educate yourself and interact with new people outside of your friend group, why not join Noname’s Book Club. Go to your local library, get a library card and get to reading.