It has been decreased yearly since the 70's either by the lack of account of inflation or the lack of account of population growth. Even though I have a list of why the arts should be better funded I think the most apt one in history is history itself. As an art teacher I have had the privilege of studying art and it's uses throughout history. One thing that I came to a realization of was that every culture, EVERY single one throughout history that put a respect and an emphasis on the arts and humanities thrived and succeeded. On the other hand cultures who didn't have that attitude and respect for the arts didn't last that long. It is true that we have many areas that money is needed in, but money isn't always the answer. For what we get from art, the money we put in is a very little cost.
The USA is well behind many first world countries in per capita spending on the arts. We can spend 100's of billions on military, but we can't even spend 1 billion on the arts. The nea is .012% of the federal budget. We spend about 4666 times more on defense then we do on the arts. We should be the envy of the world when it comes to the arts the nea should have a budget measured in billions not millions. Around 10 billion sound like a good starting point for a new nea budget.
Art is very important for young kids, as it helps develop the creative side of their brain. We do not want to become one of those countries that is just all analytics. We say we want more engineers in this country, but people will not go into that field if they have no imagination.
I think any program that benefits society as a whole deserves funding, even if many individuals do not consider it an important thing. Art makes a society better, just like educating children does. I have no children, but I have no problem with a large proportion of my taxes going to local schools.
I think budget cuts are needed across the board and the first place to cut them is the budget for the arts. I think when things return to normal they can have their funding back. It is not good for culture,but its good for society as a whole, art is always needed.
Art is a very important part of human culture, it expresses so many different things but right now there are so many other organizations and causes that could use that money and more. Starving children, homeless families, uninsured people, the list goes on and on. While the National Endowment for the Arts is a great organization, I think the other causes should be helped first.
Taxpayer funding for the National Endowment of the Arts should be reduced and more money should be spent on eliminating poverty. The NEA does serve a good purpose, but private funds should be utilized for the arts rather than taxpayer money. I understand the NEA doesn't take up a huge portion of the federal budget, but taxpayer dollars can be better spent on other programs.