Trump's New Budget Proposes Heavy Defunding of the Arts and Sciences

Trump's New Budget Proposes Heavy Defunding of the Arts and Sciences

Here's why you should be paying attention.

Here's why you should be paying attention.

Text: Jacob Seferian

A long-awaited nightmare comes one step closer to fruition as the Trump administration proposes a 2018 national budget which suggests eliminating all funding to both the National Endowment for the Arts and Humanities, as well as reducing the funding of the Environmental Protection Agency by 31% and the State Department by 28%.

Both the NEA and NEH have previously been the backbone of much the nation's artistic and cultural infrastructure, responsible for funding both individuals and programs that further education and outreach within their fields. In addition to eliminating support for these agencies, the budget blueprint released this morning also proposes cuts to the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, which is significant financial backer of NPR and PBS.

"The elimination of federal funding to CPB would initially devastate and ultimately destroy public media’s role in early childhood education, public safety, connecting citizens to our history, and promoting civil discussions—all for Americans in both rural and urban communities," warns Patricia Harrison, CEO of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

Ultimately, the budget will need to be approved by Congress before it's implemented, but this complete defunding proposed by Trump shows a startling disregard for agencies that have previously been pivotal in maintaining America's cultural landscape. Imagine, if you can, a nation without Fresh Air or Sesame Street.

With climate change on the rise as one of the world's biggest threats, Trump's proposed decrease in funding for the EPA is particularly alarming (a concern we've raised in the past, which you can read about in depth here).

The report is ironically titled, "America First"—but we wonder who exactly is being put first in Trump's re-envisioning of this country? We'll give you one guess.

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