As you all know, I love the arts. I love music. I love to sing. I love to write. I love that I get to share these passions with you every day of my life.
While I was fortunate enough to grow up in a very artistic household and receive a solid education in the arts, too many in this country do not have these opportunities. But it’s institutions like the National Endowment for the Arts that provide the necessary funds to make the arts accessible to all.
So as you can imagine, I was very saddened to hear that the House of Representatives passed an amendment that cut an additional $20 million from the NEA’s budget. As it now stands, funding for the NEA has been reduced from $167.5 million to $124.5 million–the deepest cut to the NEA in 16 years.
But there’s still hope! On February 28th, the Senate will begin working on its own version of the budget, which will include funding for the NEA. Until then, they will be on leave back in their home states. In the meantime, Americans for the Arts, the leading nonprofit in advancing the arts, is working hard on this issue. I’m a proud member of their Artists Committee and am committed to bringing these important issues to the attention of all of you.
Here’s what you can do to help. Tell your local media about the devastating impact that the House appropriations bill could have on the arts where you live. This customizable Media Alert provided by Americans for the Arts makes it easy. It will automatically send letters on your behalf to your local newspapers, radio and TV stations. All you have to do is choose a few talking points and hit send. And since they’ll be home, the chances that your Senator hears, reads and sees these messages will be extremely high.
I turn 30 the day before the vote. It would be an incredible birthday present to me for you guys to help me out on this!
Thank you in advance for being wonderful arts advocates with me.