I love how folks in News places are picking the worst excuses for art they can think of, and claiming that Obama wants to fund that garbage with the stimulus package. I wish they would pause and think about two things: the positive influence of arts organizations in their communities, and the fact that a healthy economy stems from creative people. Next, I wish they would look at what the arts funding would really do. Here's the letter to the editor I wrote this morning:
Across the country, not-for-profit Arts organizations stand to lose funding. As the economy worsens, donors tighten their belts. Without generous donations, and government support, these organizations will go under, and people who have dedicated their lives to supporting their communities will lose jobs.
I used to work at such a place. I had the great opportunity to provide a taste of music, theatre, dance or visual arts to children in the poorest schools in New Jersey. Without my work, Emanuel still would never have even seen a guitar, let alone listen to classical music on one, and have the chance to strum one himself. Jennifer never would have had the chance to finally feel like a success at something in school, as she took her final bow in her play.
New job creation requires creative thinking, and this also means supporting arts in our schools and our community. Money for the arts in a stimulus package is not a waste... unlike funding Wall Street executive Superbowl parties.