I have been having a lot of fun for a month now delving into how the arts bring recovery for enhanced brain health.
The effort has been highly informative for me as well. I think maybe now is a good time to write about the point of all of this. After all, perhaps most people would agree that art is good for health.
So just what makes my blog different? Just what do I want to accomplish with this blog? Towards that end, I would say I want to advocate for more public dollars being spent on the arts to alleviate widespread pain brought by current health, economic, environmental, political and racial crises.
Each one of these crises has tremendous consequences for mental health throughout our national life. Lumped together, the damage is incalculable.
As a news reporter just after the 2000s began, I covered the dismantling of a music program in a suburban school district outside of Columbus, Ohio. Despite being an affluent district, the schools there did not have a single orchestra.
Also, a high school marching band was eliminated despite previous national accolades earned by the band. Meanwhile, the school board wanted to create national models for curriculum in math and science. If I asked board members about the arts, they would tell me that the arts did not prepare people for jobs.
Oh, really? Tell that to 5 million people in the United States whose livelihoods depend on music and art, according to the National Endowment for the Arts website.
A good start has been made on funding for the arts to promote healing from the pandemic. For instance, Congress appropriated $75 million in 2020 and another $135 million in 2021 for the arts as part of COVID relief funds, the Endowment website states.
However, this former reporter knows only too well that public funding for the arts is often tenuous at best. That is a big reason why this blog website has been created.
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