Lake Lover Blog

Information and Insights on Lake Michigan 

Does Art Matter to You?

Is there any question that art is good for us? That it evokes emotion, inspires, motivates, educates and touches us in ways that nothing else can? We admire art in public spaces, we watch it on stage and the big screen, we hear it on the radio. Art, in all of its forms, is an essential part of our everyday lives.
Yet, the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), two federal programs that support the arts, are being threatened with elimination by the president and Congress. Why? To cut back on “wasteful” government spending. But how much does supporting the arts really cost?
The NEA budget for 2016 was $147 million. Granted, that's a lot of money. But it's only about 0.004% of the total federal budget — or about 50 cents for every person in the U.S. last year.

For a bit of perspective, the Department of Defense spent $3.2 billion to procure new Marine One helicopters, but eventually dropped the program because of excessive cost overruns. That amount alone would have funded the NEA for nearly 20 years.

It seems like we're being asked to cut laundry detergent from our grocery list in order to pay the mortgage — penny wise and pound foolish. 
So, if art does matter to you, and you'd like to protect the programs that support it, call, write or email your U.S. senators and representative and ask them to fight to save the NEA and the NEH from elimination. To find your elected officials, click here

Click here for more information about what you can do personally.