Hypocrites, Fellowships and Government Grants

type stock photoThere are many fellowships and grants available to those in the arts and literary world. Most are funded by foundations or non-profits established by the wealthy who left some money behind for this specific purpose. They would be the 1%. There are also grants available from county, city, state and the federal government through the National Endowment for the Arts and various governmental arts council. Many of the foundations and non-profits, not all, are now awarding funding to artists and writers via a panel of people who recommend them for the awards. The people who serve on the panels are anonymous, the nominations completed in secret. Those awarded proudly, as they should, list the awards on their resumes and announce them to friends and family. I don’t have a problem with any of this. I say congratulations to all those who benefit from these programs. It is nice to see those who struggle in the arts get some relief.

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There are many in the arts and literary community who make a practice, seek attention in railing against government, attacking the 1 %, and appear as noble crusaders for righteous causes. Yet, when the time comes, they take the money from the fellowships and foundations, they take the money from the government, and some serve in appointed positions as part of the government. These folks are not the majority who benefit from these programs, but they are there. They justify taking the cash by saying if they want to give it to me, I am going to take it. This hypocrisy, the appearance of standing for a cause, then sticking your snoot in the trough of those you attack is nauseating.

To the vast majority of those who benefit from these programs I say congratulations in the hope that your art benefits from the relief provided by grants and fellowships. To the minority of hypocrites, I simply say shame on you.  .

2nd-saturday-poets-1-21-12-guarnieri-reutter-readiing-017-g emil reutter lives and writes in the Fox Chase neighborhood of Philadelphia, Pa.  He can be found here: https://gereutter.wordpress.com/about/


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