Watching the Golden Globes last night, it occurred to me how we Americans worship creativity. We hold elaborate televised parties to celebrate the creative works of everyone from costume designers to lighting technicians, from makeup artists to special effects developers. Our nation honors great contributors to the arts with large medals and an evening of celebration attended by the President.
But most revered, most adored, most worshipped are those who act, direct, sing and dance. One talent is appreciated, but multiple talents make us swoon: Anne Hathaway was respected as an actor, but when it was discovered she also sang like an angel, public adoration skyrocketed.
But those same people who are glued to their TVs, making notes on every gown and placing bets on their favorite performers and directors, are the very same people who are voting to eliminate arts programs in the schools, citing expense as a reason to subvert the very creativity they adore. Ratings for such awards shows as the Golden Globes, People’s Choice, Tonys, Emmys and Oscars indicate that they are being watched by a great many more people than those few who are vocally supporting arts education in our schools.
How can we so revere those (famous, glamorous) creative people even as we stifle the beginnings of that very creativity in our children? What are voters thinking when they demand budget cuts of music and theater teachers?
Where do they think the creativity of future generations will be nurtured and encouraged?