In Sunday’s (7/26) Miami Herald , Jordan Levin writes, “As communities struggle to keep going, culture is getting kicked to the curb, last on lists of nonessential items like parks, libraries, and humanity for the homeless. The state of Florida has cut arts funding from $34 million in 2007 to $3 million this year. The entire $11 million that the Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs receives from the county is on the chopping block, victim of our plummeting property tax revenues. … Meanwhile, corporate arts funding has fallen victim to belt-tightening and shareholder rage over any expense that doesn’t boost the bottom line. … We in the media play our role in all this. Just like the rest of the culture, the media focuses on the most dominant movies, pop music and television, because that’s where the numbers and the profitable ad rates are. … But the more the media ignores the arts because they’re ‘unimportant,’ the more that attitude is reinforced in the world at large. It’s a nasty circle. The arts increasingly disappear from public consciousness, and so the media is further justified in ignoring them.”

Posted July 29, 2009