Should government dollars fund the arts? | The Tylt

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Should government dollars fund the arts?
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#DontCutArtsFunding

The U.S. spends far, far less on arts funding than our European counterparts do. Per capita, our National Endowment for the Arts spends 1/40th of what Germany spends on the arts. And many argue the arts are not a nice extra; the arts are central to what makes us human.

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The Heritage Foundation has argued for decades that the NEA is unnecessary and an inefficient use of money. 

#PayForYourOwnArt

With crumbling infrastructure, struggling public schools, hungry and homeless citizens, can we really justify spending money on art? Do we need to address the real life-and-death issues that confront our nation before we talk about culture? No one is saying artists can't make art—they just may need to do it without federal assistance, as so many already do.

#DontCutArtsFunding

The NEA got $148 million in funding in 2016, a year when the federal government spent about $3.9 trillion. What the government gives to the arts is astonishingly small. At the Washington Post, Philip Bump points out that arts spending makes up less than 0.02 percent of federal spending:

Put another way, if you make $50,000 a year, spending the equivalent of what the government spends on these three programs would be like spending less than $10.
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There is a solid, evidence-based argument that every dollar invested in the arts is an investment in jobs, healthy communities, tourism, and economic growth.

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For many, the arts are just a luxury—one that a nation in debt simply cannot afford. Let's feed our people and take care of our infrastructure first, go to the opera later.

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