Trump's arts cuts will most hurt youth and rural programs in WA

Marcel Micheaux
Mars 20, 2017

She is now starring in the national touring production of "Fun Home", the Tony Award-winning musical based on Alison Bechdel's best-selling graphic novel.

As the 5th Avenue's Armstrong and others interviewed for this story mentioned, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill famously refused to siphon off arts funding to fund the military for World War II, announcing that: "The arts are essential to any complete national life".

"We know we're OK this year, but the next two years?" said Barbara Theroux, one of the festival organizers.

"Those who are not purchasing broadcast services to cable or satellite - those are the ones who are the most likely to be impacted", said Dominic Caristi, a professor at Ball State University in Indiana.

"Small stations like WQPT are especially vulnerable to this", she said. "I am talking about real jobs for exactly the middle-class America that has been gutted by evolutions in industry and manufacturing".

The Wisconsin Arts Board received $817,600 from the NEA this year, a figure that is matched by the state. At the ceremony he called art "a nation's most precious heritage".

According to NPR, this is the first time any president has proposed a measure this drastic to arts and media-based funds. As a federal government agency, the NEA can not engage in advocacy, either directly or indirectly.

"There's a whole funding ecosystem that's going to be disrupted if all these funding sources go away", said Greg Laikos, spokesman for the Massachusetts Cultural Council. NEA funding employs fabricators, and carpenters, and electricians, and people who do concrete sandblasting. These moves will harm larger arts programs than ours and hurt their chances for survival.

Donald Trump visiting the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C., last month. Framed differently, the NEA allocation makes up 0.013 percent of all discretionary spending or 0.004 percent of the total 2015 federal budget. "But this is a start", he continues. "The answer was no", White House budget director Mick Mulvaney said Thursday morning.

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The Corporation for Public Broadcasting now receives $485 million a year.

When asked about that argument, Shindle objected to the idea that eliminating arts funding is "cutting waste".

He said, for example, that it has close ties to Lewiston's library, which he described as "just a jewel", to put on public programs with speakers and discussions.

If we lose the NEA and the NEH, I don't think writers and other artists will stop creating, or that scholars of literature and history will lay down the tools of their trade and cease to function. "This is actually very well-spent money that these organizations distribute". Public funding for the arts affirms that the enterprise of community remains central to us, that we still believe in the human future.

"The lord has been good to me late in life, my friend", Patrick J. Buchanan, the conservative firebrand, said in an interview this week about the president's assault on the National Endowment for the Arts, which Mr. Buchanan railed against during his insurgent run for president in 1992.

'We understand that the President's budget request is a first step in a very long budget process; as part of that process we are working with the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to prepare information they have requested. There are so many foundations. "I'm alarmed by it but I've seen the convulsions the NEA has gone through in the past", said Peter Sutton, director of the Bruce Museum in Greenwich.

"We're 35 miles southeast of Pittsburgh".

"That's a huge chunk to make up through fundraising", she said. "We're not really anxious". What becomes of that hard-to-define but crucial thing, the heart or soul of who we are? Through partnerships with state arts agencies, NEA grants fund arts programs to ensure freedom of thought, imagination and inquiry. It links the museum to the rest of the city of Greensburg, which has a population of about 15,000. "August" eventually became a film starring Meryl Streep and George Clooney; the touring version of "Hamilton", a hip-hop musical about one of the US founding fathers, has become so popular, it's powering local theater subscriptions so people can get first dibs on their seats.

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