Letters to the Editor

Donald Trump should support the arts, not focus on building walls

U.S. President Donald Trump waits for Prime Minister Lokke Rasmussen of Denmark outside the West Wing of the White House on March 30, 2017 in Washington, D.C.
U.S. President Donald Trump waits for Prime Minister Lokke Rasmussen of Denmark outside the West Wing of the White House on March 30, 2017 in Washington, D.C. TNS

Using tax dollars to put up a wall that will be a symbol rather than a deterrence is ignorance. Banning a particular religious group from entering the country is un-American, but defunding the arts is a crime against humanity.

A great civilization is not measured by its political leaders and their executive orders. It is measured by the creative works of its geniuses. Ultimately, the civilization that is the United States will be measured by posterity for its music, its dance, its theater, its literature, its visual arts and its film.

Greece was a democracy. So what? It is Greek drama, sculpture, architecture and philosophy that has lived through the ages. Renaissance Italy is remembered for its art, not the rivalry of city-states. Yes, we know the Medicis, not because they were great bankers, but because they were patrons of the arts.

Imagine the United Kingdom without the BBC or The Old Vic. Imagine Italy without La Scala or France without the Louvre.

Presidents such as Kennedy and Obama revered the arts. To Donald Trump, they are just a frivolous waste of money that could be spent on something eternal, like a wall whose message is the opposite of that of the Statue of Liberty.

Tom Bauer, Morro Bay

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