Readers’ Forum: Oct. 6

190

Extend library hours

I use the Harold B. Lee Library frequently. Its resources are valuable to my education, and it provides a helpful environment to study and finish projects in group settings. However, it is frustrating to lose my train of thought when the library closes at midnight. The campus community would greatly benefit from extended library hours.

Students across campus have varying schedules. In some cases, the only time all students in a group are available could be while the library is closed. Locations to work on assignments past midnight are limited with the opposite gender. The library can provide a good location to work together at late hours.

Other universities have this resource for students. For example, I am a transfer student from the University of Southern California, and their 24/7 library was very useful to me. There were plenty of students at late hours of the night utilizing the library.

There are certainly some issues with keeping the library open, but none are insurmountable. For example, critics of this idea might be concerned about energy use, security and health. Closing off parts of the library at night and having ID checks are could help resolve such issues. As for health, many students already stay up all night and having this resource will provide a comfortable environment to focus without distractions from home.

— Dail Kim

Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif.

 

Advertising at General Conference is an affront to the Sabbath

It must be a great temptation for companies whose primary market is the LDS community, to advertise at General Conference, where twice a year they are offered a captive audience of practically the entire LDS population in an event that may described as the “Super Bowl” of the LDS world. We must remember, however, that General Conference is not a commercial event but a spiritual one. The advertising broadcasted by BYUtv before and after the event offends the sanctity of the event and the spirit of the Sabbath.

Ironically, in this weekend’s Conference, the authorities of the church continued their campaign of Sabbath-day observance, including the abstinence from activities of commerce. Contrary to this instruction, the advertisements capitalize on the event in a fashion akin to the moneychangers whom Christ scourged from the temple mount. The ads are usually provided by businesses that specifically target LDS audiences such as “Holy Tabbs” scripture markers, Deseret Book and Deseret First Credit Union, whose ad proclaims, “serving the LDS community since 1955.” The common theme of these ads is that they use Mormon symbols and rhetoric in order to exploit the predominately LDS audience that conference attracts. While these companies purport LDS values, they are actually doing church members a disservice by engaging them in commercial activity on the Sabbath day.

The real problem is that BYUtv even runs advertisements on Sundays. Again, the temptation must be severe, and ad space must sell for a much higher price surrounding conference, just like the Super Bowl. But selling ad space on Sunday taints the sanctity of the day and contradicts BYUtv’s tagline, “see the good in the world.”

The most practical way to disengage with this commerce is to find a different platform for viewing General Conference. Either watch it online via lds.org, which is ad free, or attend your local church meetinghouse where it is being broadcasted. Not only will this allow church members to fully honor the Sabbath but reduced traffic on the BYUtv network during General Conference will decrease the value of the ad space, hopefully mitigating Sabbath day advertisements in the future.

— Sam Turner

Calgary, Alberta

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