Pinching pennies could bring an end to enriching lives through federally funded humanities and arts programs.

President Donald Trump’s administration has proposed a list of nine domestic programs to possibly divest federal dollars from its budget.

Among them is a laundry list of popular, low-cost arts and humanitarian programs such as:

  • The Corporation for Public Broadcasting
  • The National Endowments for the Arts
  • The National Endowments for the Humanities
  • The Corporation for National and Community Service

Total annual savings by cutting these and other programs, which the administration claims are misused taxpayer dollars, is $2.5 billion out of a projected annual budget of nearly $4 trillion.

A Republican Study Committee report rationalizes that “the federal government should not be in the business of funding the arts.”

The Shorthorn believes an accessible art and humanities education is paramount to growing well-rounded and independent individuals. While this starts at the grade school level, higher education institutions rely on nonprofit, federally funded programs to better serve all students.

While these programs are still available, students should invest time and donate money to the arts and humanities programs that matter to them.

To suggest that the humanities and arts programs are extraneous budgetary costs suggests that the topics are extraneous for the American public’s education.

Arts and humanities students’ career prospects will be affected if these nonprofit programs lose federal funding, as they depend on grants.

The federal government owes it to its public to provide them with a baseline of the arts, from which they can choose to build upon.

For students of higher education, this means engaging in humanitarian and arts programs shaping the future.

Most of these programs’ funding falls under $500 million, a measly amount compared to the National Science Foundation’s federally funded amount of $7.5 billion.

Trump’s administration also wants to increase military funding by $54 billion and cut the same amount from the rest of government spending.

The cuts from arts and humanities programs would be part of that reduction in spending, a reduction we can’t afford.

These programs fund necessities in American life, such as museums, art education, public TV, research, community service, teaching and more.

It’s vital that these programs be preserved, so the American way of life can be preserved.

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