Recently, a controversial alternative school had its construction permit revoked in Galloway Township. The plan for the school has stirred up a lot of mixed feelings among residents in the township.

Well, here's an idea that maybe Galloway (or another local community) could embrace - or, maybe not.

The idea is to lend out people to other people.

If you're thinking, "Hey, that's been tried for years in Atlantic City", you're kinda correct, but just not in this case.

Follow me here, and get your mind out of the gutter.

I'm talking about a place that would let a person borrow another person, not for some deviant or slave-labor-like reason, but - to talk. To talk and learn.

I'm talking a library, but instead of books, you borrow people.

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Too crazy? It's already happening, right in middle America. The Human Library is open and doing well in Muncie, Indiana. It's a non-profit that's been in operation for some 20 years. Instead of lending out books, this library lends out people.

According to their website, the Human Library "creates a safe space for dialogue where topics are discussed openly between our human books and their readers."

Volunteers sign up for under their topics of expertise or their life experience, and other people can borrow them for some real and meaningful dialogue about whatever they're interested in.

Imagine, instead of reading about people with autism, an addiction, ADHD or something else, you can talk directly, face-to-face with someone who's living and experiencing the very thing you want to know more about!

Among the topics that humans are available to talk about are bipolar disorder, body mod extreme (someone who has a lot of tattoos and piercings), homeless, Muslim, and more!

Photo by Andra C Taylor Jr on Unsplash
Photo by Andra C Taylor Jr on Unsplash

So, what do you think? Could we have such a service in South Jersey?

If you're as fascinated by this idea as I am, you can find more information on the Human Library website. Anyone want to check me out and learn what it's like to wake up at 3 am every morning?

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