'Arts Day' at the State House

March 12, 2009
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Arts advocates are used to having trouble getting attention. But today's Arts Day at the Indiana State House is being double teamed by a downtown fire and the Big 10 tournament. (The fire already bumped my Fox 59 weekend A&E preview segment off the schedule today, which of course delivers a crushing blow to the arts.)

Still, the Indiana Coalition for the Arts is pushing for a big presence today--and more via e-mail--to push the value of public funding for the arts and arts education. More details here.  

So what message do you think arts advocates should be sending? Or do you think, in tough economic times, that the arts should take a back seat to other priorities?

Your thoughts?
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  • I think Arts the the foundation of civilized society is a good start - when all else is crumbling to ruin (stock market, sports teams...) the arts are enduring. Also, in these times, I think the truly fringe elements of the arts (i.e. anything dealing with poop) should be minimized and exhibits/shows with broader appeal (See how many people we're making happy!) should be emphasized. 1,000 people at an art event is a much better turn-out (comparatively) than 1,000 people at a Pacers game.

    Just my 2 cents.
  • I didn't have a free moment until just now (after 5 pm) so I don't know if my email will count towards the goal of 1000 emails today, but here is what I sent anyway:

    Dear _____,

    I hope it is not too late to add my voice to the others who are contacting you today during Arts Day at the Statehouse.

    The arts are essential to the well-being of our community. They are NOT a frill or something that would be nice if... They are essential.

    Please do NOT support any major cuts to the arts.

    Sincerely,

    Hope Baugh

    That Indiana Coalition for the Arts website made it very easy to compose and send an email to my representatives. I appreciate that! I didn't use their talking points, obviously, but I appreciated having them there to think about.

    I am proud of myself for writing something so short. I could write volumes on the importance of the arts!

    Sue B., I don't know if I always need art to make me happy...sometimes I would rather it make me think or that it inspire me or that it heal me or that it make me feel less lonely and/or less alone, all of which are a little different from making me happy.

    But I love your no poop guideline.

    Hope Baugh
    Indy Theatre Habit
  • Interestingly, even though I subscribe (and mostly ready) a number of arts organization's newsletters, I was not aware of this day. I'm assuming many of the local arts organizations support the Coalition. I would have gladly spread the word and given my support.
  • Attending Arts Day at the Statehouse gave me a great chance to network, and find out about several different organizations at opposite ends of Indiana's art world. Unfortunately, I didn't see many fellow artists.
  • This day was poorly publicized, if at all. Attendance was the usual suspects of area arts administrators. The inclusion of awards in the ceremonies just added to the unfocused impression the entire event gave. If you are gathering at the Statehouse to lobby, then just lobby!

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  1. These liberals are out of control. They want to drive our economy into the ground and double and triple our electric bills. Sierra Club, stay out of Indy!

  2. These activist liberal judges have gotten out of control. Thankfully we have a sensible supreme court that overturns their absurd rulings!

  3. Maybe they shouldn't be throwing money at the IRL or whatever they call it now. Probably should save that money for actual operations.

  4. For you central Indiana folks that don't know what a good pizza is, Aurelio's will take care of that. There are some good pizza places in central Indiana but nothing like this!!!

  5. I am troubled with this whole string of comments as I am not sure anyone pointed out that many of the "high paying" positions have been eliminated identified by asterisks as of fiscal year 2012. That indicates to me that the hospitals are making responsible yet difficult decisions and eliminating heavy paying positions. To make this more problematic, we have created a society of "entitlement" where individuals believe they should receive free services at no cost to them. I have yet to get a house repair done at no cost nor have I taken my car that is out of warranty for repair for free repair expecting the government to pay for it even though it is the second largest investment one makes in their life besides purchasing a home. Yet, we continue to hear verbal and aggressive abuse from the consumer who expects free services and have to reward them as a result of HCAHPS surveys which we have no influence over as it is 3rd party required by CMS. Peel the onion and get to the root of the problem...you will find that society has created the problem and our current political landscape and not the people who were fortunate to lead healthcare in the right direction before becoming distorted. As a side note, I had a friend sit in an ED in Canada for nearly two days prior to being evaluated and then finally...3 months later got a CT of the head. You pay for what you get...

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