Sleeping in the library: Not just a bad idea

Sleeping in the library is not just a bad idea; it is a dangerously bad idea. It is a common sight to see Santa Monica College students in the library putting aside their daily schoolwork to catch a nap in between classes.

These individuals take up space that could be used by students who want to finish homework and study for an upcoming test, turning it into a sweet spot for catching up on lost sleep.

Mona Martin, dean of the SMC library, says there is no policy against sleeping in the library.

"The reason I say we don't have a rule against sleeping in the library is we know that our students many of them are commuting," Martin says. ''Students come in, start reading, and start getting sleepy."

She explains that commuters who take early morning classes would rather pass time sleeping in the library than go home just to have to return to school later.

"I see students who come in here and just plain come here to sleep," Martin says. "While that may not exactly be the intended purpose of the library, we know that sometimes students just need a place to sleep."

Although students who fall asleep while studying in the library have a much more valid excuse than those who decide to walk in with the sole purpose of sleeping, both sides are at fault for the true danger within the school's book haven.

Students who have left their personal items unattended while they sleep have woken up to rude and costly awakenings.

Within the last two weeks, there have been at least eight reports of stolen property within the library.

Six of the incidents occurred while students fell asleep with their personal belongings unattended, and four ended up costing students more than $400, according to crime reports provided by the Santa Monica College Police Department.

These thefts consist of only those reported, and combined with the thefts that have gone unnoticed, the total amount of crime committed within the library could be inconceivable.

As the campus is filled to the brink with idiotic individuals with nothing better to do than to rob others of their personal belongings to feed their own juvenile, materialistic pockets, victims of these crimes need to realize that they are just as mindless.

Students who sleep in the library are not resting their brains, but shutting them off completely. They need to understand that there are other individuals, who stalk and lurk within the library, waiting to pounce on any opportunity to steal valuable items.

Students should not expect these vultures to suddenly find it within the kindness of their hearts to wake them up whenever they see something worth taking.

These thieves will strike, and they will do it cleverly. Students can complain all they want about how the school, the library, and the campus police are not doing enough to secure the area for naptime.

It is these same students that would whine and moan if the library were to ever enforce any kind of regulation against their library slumber parties.

The library and the school should forbid sleeping in the library. The school already charges a high price for food, parking and other fees. A penalty against sleeping would hardly seem like anything new. Let's say a $10 penalty were given to sleeping students, then that would resemble peanuts compared to the cost of several items that are left unattended and stolen every day.

A penalty like this would certainly be at the disapproval of many students, but the school can no longer adhere to what students want. Instead, they must figure out what students need.

How many more thefts will it take? How much more money will it cost?

The library has been gracious enough to allow students to rest inside, but it can no longer just stand by as these crimes continuously damage its credibility.

As great as it would be to see the school do more to prevent thievery in the library, it would be in the best interest of students if they would just pay attention to the signs at the entrance and within the library that warn students of the thefts taking place.

Students have to decide if catching up on sleep is worth the risk of losing hundreds of dollars in personal belongings. Go to sleep early, or take a nap on the grass, but do not subject yourself to crimes which can be easily avoided.

The library is for reading, studying, and doing homework. It is not a place to sleep, and it is not a location to set up a crime ring. But since students cannot seem to understand this, the school needs to take action.

Without this, students will continue sleeping in the library, and continue paying the price for their own mindless negligence.