Today is Arts Advocacy Day

Arts Advocacy Day snuck up on me and whacked me over the head this morning. In truth, it was a simple email from Americans for the Arts, to which I belong.

I’m a poor excuse for an advocate when I didn’t even have it on my calendar. Here’s what they wrote:

Today hundreds of dedicated arts supporters from across the country have come together in Washington, DC for National Arts Advocacy Day, a united effort to tell Capitol Hill how important culture is to our communities, how much arts education means to our children, and how much the arts improve our daily lives. More than 85 National CoSponsors have helped us shape this united arts message to Congress.

Even if you’re not able to join us in Washington, you can still participate in Arts Advocacy Day by asking your Members of Congress to support the arts. By visiting our E-Advocacy Center, you’ll be able to send a message directly to your Representative and Senators telling them why the arts are important to you and your community. We’ve provided bullet points covering our nine key Arts Advocacy Day issues, which you can use in the sample letter that we’ve drafted for you. We also encourage you to write your own unique story to illustrate the importance of the arts to your community. Using the E-Advocacy Center, you can create and send your letter to Congress in less than two minutes. We urge you to send your message to Congress today to coincide with our office visits to the Hill.

Need more information? Browse the 2006 Congressional Arts Handbook for issue briefs, voting records, latest arts research and trends, relevant Congressional committees, and Congressional contact lists.

Thank you for your continued support of the arts!

This is a gentle reminder that it’s up to us to speak up. We must find a voice. Please read my article, Why Art Matters, regarding this issue. It’s an overview of a wonderful and convincing talk I heard by Dana Gioia, chair of the National Endowment for the Arts.

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