What just came through my email inbox? Why, it's Barack Obama's Arts Policy. Just skim the headlines - funding for the arts and arts education, cultural diplomacy, this Artist Corps sounds fun... even... WHAT? HEALTH CARE for artists. Wow. WOW. I think I'm hooked. Reading through this is like eating candy, like reading a wish list of mine. Even if most of these things don't happen in real life, I can't believe we've actually got a guy running for President that's actually thinking this way. Artists are so used to working late into the night for little to no recognition that this nod our way seems way too good to be true.
However, in the interest of fairness - and I don't mean this sarcastically. I work for a newspaper now and am increasingly aware of the importance of fairness - I thought I ought to look up John McCain's arts policy.
From what I can find on the internet, he doesn't have one. I'm not the first blogger to bring this up, either. A google search on "McCain's arts policy" brings up several posts about this very topic. Artocracy has actually tried contacting McCain's campaign to figure out his policy and gotten no response.
Elizabeth Currid of Election 2008 writes, "McCain doesn’t have an arts policy, other than a desire to eliminate spending directed toward the arts."
Her entire article is worth reading, as it outlines what cuts have been made to arts funding in the last 15 years and provides statistics that are hard to argue with about how the arts makes up a good percent of the workforce.
I have to say that this is very smart marketing on Senator Obama's part. Senator McCain must not realize how many of us there are who, while are also concerned about the economy and safety of our country, really struggle every day with this stuff.
I'm open to rebuttals -- has anybody out there seen otherwise on this issue?