Yes, we’re after your children and grandchildren. Yes, we want to show them an alternative lifestyle. Yes, it may mean that they experience heartache and outright misery at times and people will point at them and call them names.
We need the arts. We need painters, sculptors, musicians, dancers, writers, actors, and those who practice art forms that may be strange and incomprehensible to some. We need to get the children inducted as early as possible exploring the many variations available to them in the art world.
The Arts are keys that unlock different parts of the brain. The Arts take us on trips to places we can’t reach by travel. The Arts help us to understand those unlike us a little better. The Arts give people a chance to create something lasting without procreating.
My children were fortunate, though we were Welfare-beat-down poor. They were able to attend elementary schools that taught the “3 Rs” through the fourth R – ART. Gym class was dance. Math tied into music. Reading, writing, and science were supplemented in the art room and in drama class.
My son knew by the time he was nine years old he did not like Jackson Pollock’s work, and he could tell you why because he’d been exposed to so many different artists and styles by that age he could say more than, “That sucks.” He discovered early on the power in words, pictures, music, and drama. Did it make him an easier person to get along with? Not necessarily, but he did see options beyond the nine-to-five.
My daughter soaked up everything that was presented to her and later decided in high school that theater was her passion. She was the first person to earn a Bachelor’s Degree in our entire family. It is a degree in Theater and she hopes to find the funds to get a teaching certification that would enable her to share her love with the next crop of future actors, set designers, stage hands, and stage techs.
Because my kids were able to experience the arts, they have great strengths in expression. They know they are not limited to words. They know they are not limited by culture. They are not xenophobes or homophobes.
They aren’t rich like the kids who grew up to be doctors and lawyers, and they may never have financial security. What they do have is a creative view of the world, and it’s the creative thinkers that see beyond the mundane and show us what can be.
What my son does now:
Warning – PUNK GOTH SHOCK ROCK ALERT!
Despair on the Radio
(He’s the one punishing the flying V and whipping his dreads.)
What my daughter does now:
WARNING: Openly gay man featured.
Theme Song Gone Wrong
(She’s the one sitting at the desk.)
(This article was inspired by an article by CC Miranda.)