Actors, artistes denounce Trump's proposed art budget cuts
The artistic community has denounced US President Donald Trump's proposal to eliminate funding to the Corporation of Public Broadcasting and the National Endowment of the Arts (NEA).Trump has reportedly proposed the elimination of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, but the body, nor its subsidiaries National Public Radio (NPR) and Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) plan to take this lying down.
PBS President and CEO Paula Karger issued a statement outlining the low costs and high returns of public broadcasting, reports variety.com.
The statement read: "PBS and our nearly 350 member stations, along with our viewers, continue to remind Congress of our strong support among Republican and Democratic voters, in rural and urban areas across every region of the country.
"We have always had support from both parties in Congress, and will again make clear what the public receives in return for federal funding for public broadcasting.
"The cost of public broadcasting is small, only $1.35 per citizen per year, and the benefits are tangible: increasing school readiness for kids 2-8, support for teachers and homeschoolers, lifelong learning, public safety communications and civil discourse."
In a separate statement, NEA Chairman Jane Chu wrote: "We are disappointed because we see our funding actively making a difference with individuals of all ages in thousands of communities, large, small, urban and rural, and in every Congressional District in the nation."
According to variety.com, an online petition to support federal funding of the arts has already received over 230,000 signatures.
Actors and artists took to social media to denounce the proposed budget cuts. Indian-American actor Kal Penn posted a call to action writing: "Proposed Trump #SkinnyBudget eliminates @NEAarts. Tell your representative we need to #SAVEtheNEA."
Author Mark Harris called out the disparity in spending. Trump aims to increase military spending by $54 billion.