Engage in Democracy through Books, Art, and Civic Challenges

It’s a numbers game. From the 2020 Census to the presidential election, everything is about the numbers.

On Saturday, September 26, Cleveland Public Library is digging into the story behind the numbers when Cathy O’Neil kicks off our Authors on Democracy virtual series. O’Neil, who wrote Weapons of Math Destruction: How Big Data Increases Inequality and Threatens Democracy, will speak at 2 p.m. via Zoom. Register now to hear how algorithms affect our lives – where we go to school, how much we pay for health insurance, and how companies hire new workers.

“Algorithms aren’t just for social media. They’re everywhere and affect how we make decisions,” said Aaron Mason, Director of Community Engagement at Cleveland Public Library. “Cathy O’Neil is sure to make us think and possibly change our behaviors in a positive and impactful way.”

In December, two New York Times bestselling authors will focus on human rights, race, and how to create a more equitable society:

DR. IBRAM X. KENDI: One of America’s leading antiracist voices and author of Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and YOU, his book with Jason Reynolds, will appear at the #CLEReads YA Book Festival.

BRYAN STEVENSON: He’s the founder and Executive Director of the Equal Justice Initiative in Montgomery, AL and author of Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption. Saturday, December 5 at 12 p.m.
Register: cpl.org/stevenson

All events are free and will be held online to help maintain safe social distance and prevent the spread of COVID-19. Attendees are encouraged to register.

Be Counted. Be Heard.

Cleveland Public Library wants to make sure everyone completes the Census and votes this presidential election. Our staff is available to help visitors fill out voter registration and Census forms. To help prevent the spread of COVID-19, we have vote-by-mail application stations at all locations as a touchless option to retrieve materials.

Cleveland Public Library joins The City Club of Cleveland to participate in Five Days for Democracy—a week dedicated to exploring what democracy means to you, why it’s important, and why it’s worth fighting for. The Five Days for Democracy challenge will run from Monday, September 28 through Friday, October 2. Registered participants will examine different facets of our democracy – from listening to a podcast to watching a video, reading an article, or responding to a call to action.

Day One
Why Democracy
Day Two
Day Three
Day Four
Day Five
Why Vote

For more information and to sign up, visit the Five Days for Democracy website. Join the conversation on social media using #5days4democracy.

Much like Five Days for Democracy, a new public art installation is inspiring Clevelanders to learn about democracy, how it works, and their duty to preserve it. In partnership with LAND studio, the Library installed “Reflect and Refract Democracy” by Rose DeSiano in the Eastman Reading Garden outside Main Library. The interactive installation allows visitors to see themselves reflected in the mirrors and prisms that showcase photographs representing three aspects of American democracy: protest, leisure, and labor. The exhibition will be on display until November 30.

For more information about the art installation, the 2020 Census, or the presidential election, go to cpl.org/democracy-2020/.

Democracy 2020 Sponsors

Medical Mutual

Democracy 2020 Partners:

Cuyahoga Board of Elections
Northeast Ohio Voter Advocates
Cuyahoga Counts Census 2020
League of Women Voters