Adequate Funding For The Nea Essay

1864 words - 8 pages

The National Endowment for the Arts is an independent agency that is funded by the federal government to help support many artists around the U.S. It has successfully been granting artists of every kind and has benefitted thousands of individuals and communities since its establishment in 1965. The NEA has had a huge impact in the development and the preservation of dance, design, folk and traditional arts, literature, media arts, museums, music, opera, theater, and visual arts (arts.gov). Over the years the NEA has awarded more than $4 billion to support artistic excellence, creativity, and innovation. It is the largest annual funder of the arts in the United states and has awarded more than 140,000 grants. In order to extend its reach and awareness as much as possible the NEA also devotes forty percent of its funds to go to 56 state and jurisdictional art agencies as well as six regional arts organizations. Recently the National Endowment for the Arts released a survey representing adult participation in art and art related activities, it is the largest periodic study in the nation. The data from this survey has proved their companion reports true when confirming the importance of arts education, expansive systems, and better audiences (The Big Read). However, the appropriations for the NEA have decreased by over $16 million in the last couple of years. This funding cut has cost many of their neighboring organizations and agencies to make cuts as well, impacting many schools, prospering artists, and job opportunities. Whether or not people choose to see the necessity of art in society, it is the only subject that assimilates every aspect of the “common core” standards (Higgins). Art is important in every form and its benefits are far more rewarding than taxing. It is the responsibility of the government to keep our country moving forward and what better way to do that than through programs such as the NEA. Not only does the NEA create jobs and economic benefits, but it represents our history, our culture, and is essential to education, that is why we should increase funding the National Endowment for the Arts.

Over the past twenty years, the total public funding for the arts has increased by 15.6 percent. However, in the past twenty years prices and deficit have continued to increase as well. When looking at numbers in specific, it is easy to assume that there is an adequate amount of funding for the arts, however, many don’t realize how inflation and recessions have hurt it. Each layer of the government displays a different pattern, the NEA being a consistently flat pattern after sustaining large cuts in the mid 1990s. The future is not looking bright for public funding in the arts category. After the adjustment was made in respect with inflation, public funding was decreased by more that thirty percent, according to Ryan Stubbs of the National Assembly of State Art Agencies. Stubbs, the research director at NASAA, also notes that the...

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