Eliminating The National Endowment For The Arts

2620 words - 10 pages

The National Endowment for the Arts is an independent agency of the federal government specifically designed to support and enhances the art community for minority groups. The NEA was founded in 1965 and has controlled the art community ever since. This has aided in censoring works of supposedly obscene and controversial art. The elimination of the NEA, or making it a private organization, would free much needed public tax dollars to go to more important parts of the nations budgets, as well as open the art communities up for the freedom to exhibit the controversial pieces of art work the NEA deems inappropriate.
Congress created The National Endowment for the Arts in response to the National Foundation on the Arts and the Humanities Act of 1965. The NEH Act was signed by President Lyndon Johnson and set into law the creation of two separate, independent agencies, the NEA and the NEH. The idea for the bill began in 1963 when National Commission on the Humanities published that the arts and humanities in schools were in a decline due to an emphasis on science. In March of 1965 the bill was proposed by Congressman Moorhead to the legislation to implement the suggestions of the commission’s findings. In September the NEH Act of 1965 was signed and made law, thus creating the National Endowment for the Arts and National Endowment for the Humanities (“How the NEH Got its Start”).
The National Foundation on the Arts and the Humanities Act of 1965 was set into law to promote progress, scholarship in the humanities and the arts in the United States. This bill was set in place to “encourage…and support [the] national progress…in the humanities and the arts.” The bill states that it is primarily up to the local government to initiate the development of a local art community, but the Federal Government feels that it is an “appropriate matter…of concern” for them too. The National Foundation on the Arts and Humanities Act of 1965 states that it is up to the Federal Government to assist the local, state, regional and private agencies and artist in developing arts in the communities in several different ways. It also states that the Federal Government is to encourage freedom of thought, imagination, and inquiry but also the material conditions facilitating the release of this creative talent. Lastly, the Act states that it is to fulfill an educational mission and make widely available the greatest achievements of art “National Foundation on the Arts and Humanities Act of 1965”).
What the NEA set out to do and what it does are two different things. The NEA is first and foremost set up as a nonpartisan branch of the government; however, throughout the past decade, the NEA has been found in the pockets of many partisan politicians. An independent agency of the government is supposedly not controlled by Democratic or Republic parties. In the past decade proof of political control and gain has been proven to regulate the NEA. The parties use the NEA to gain...

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