The arts are vital for America . They improve the quality of life for millions of Americans are highly beneficial to the economy . They provide gainful employemt to so many talented people .
But unfortunately , many conservatives in America ,both politicians and private citizens want to abolish the National Endowment for the Arts because of their objections to certain controversial art works which they consider indecent and obscene . But they fail to realize that this organozation does much more than allegedly fostering "obscene" art .
It funds drama and dance companies ,as well as classical music and other arts organizations which no one could rationally find objectionable . Furthermore , the government takes less than a dollar from each taxpayer every year to support the NEA , which is a pitiful amount .
As a classical musician and firm believer in government support for the arts ,I find this appalling . One deplorable result of the pittance given by the US government to support the arts as well as the current economic woes is the fact that many of America's great symphony orchestras and opera companies are going through severe economic difficulties and are even faced with the possibility of going under .
In fact, a number of them have been forced out of existence by such adverse circumstances . Some say that these performing arts institutions should be funded privately and not by the government . If only this were the case ! Private donations do this to some extent but do not provide nearly enough for our orchestras and opera companies to remain in good financial estate.
It takes millions of dollars to run a world-class symphony orchestra or opera company . But in Europe , generous government support of them is taken for granted ,and it would be unimaginable for one of these in such great cities as Paris,Berlin,Vienna, Munich or Amsterdam etc to go under .
But no one in Europe objects to this generous support . Why should we object in America ?
There is so much gloomy talk about all that is wrong with America ; the poor state of public education, the crass and vulgar culture and the constant pandering to the lowest common denominator and all that .
But America's many great orchestras and opera companies are something that we can and should be proud of . They are a national treasure . And it's shameful for any nation to neglect and jeopardize its national treasures .
The arts are vital to any nation . They make life more than just a daily grind to earn a living and improve the quality of life for so many people everywhere . Therefore , we must never abolish the NEA . In fact , we must give it much more funding .
Abolishing the NEA because of a handful of objectionable art works makes about as much sense as cutting off your whole arm to get rid of a hangnail .