Thursday, February 05, 2009

Thou Shalt Keep Art in Thy Stimulus Package

We are all wondering if this 2009 stimulus bill will work. Who knows? Only time will tell. I’m offended that so many critics are making negative and disparaging comments about the National Endowments of the Arts being included in the bill. Personally, I know a few artists that make their complete livelihood based upon contracts that with arts programs in schools and theatres that are funded by the NEA.

I’ll call the people that I’m referring to…my friends. My friends pay taxes (sales, income, and quarterly business taxes). My friends make car notes, mortgage payments, and fulfill daycare expenses. If that is not enough, my friends buy groceries, and other things that they need or want.

To cut off funding for these contracts would hurt collaborating artists who are dedicated to the arts industry.

We can’t forget about the non-creative people who have jobs in a creative environment. These people, I’ll also call them…my friends; pay taxes, make car payments, buy groceries, etc.

In my most humble opinion, the people that suffer the most when unsupported, under funded, and non-stimulated arts programs are the recipients. I’ll refer to these recipients as…. friends, family, supporters, and young undeveloped minds that could create a new and improved marketplace based upon a creative idea shared from a professional artist.

With full-time, full fledged creative professionals, art is not merely a hobby nor an extra-curricular activity. It is a gift, a calling, honest work, a service, and a product.

In closing, I am thankful for every museum, gallery, theatre, coffee shop, school, library, hall, centre, and venue that I’ve even once stepped foot in. My life has be stimulated and enriched by artist from the past as well as those forging ahead in new uncharted grounds.

Art will and shall be important in America.

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