In an interview with PW earlier this spring, sociologist Eric Klinenberg, author of the acclaimed 2018 book Palaces for the People: How Social Infrastructure Can Help Fight Inequality, Polarization, and the Decline of Civic Life, warned that such an impasse was likely on the horizon.
“Let’s be clear, when you hear there is a debate in Congress about whether to ‘bail out’ states and cities, that is a debate about whether your local library stays open, or closes,” Klinenberg told PW. “That’s about whether the park system stays open or closes. It’s about schools and teachers. And American voters are going to need to connect the dots, or we could soon find ourselves without many of the institutions that keep us stable.”