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Thoughts on the Super Bowl
Today is the Superbowl. Superstars, super-hype, super bucks. In our society we have placed in inordinate emphasis on sports and sport celebrities. The arts are not given a tenth of the attention and finances lavished on sports. Sports advocates will argue that it is because professional games generate money. But from where? Advertising? And what are the ingredients of successful ads? Creativity, design and art.
Without a solid arts foundation, those involved in creating spectacular ads and special effects would not remain on the creative cutting edge. We have lost the obvious connection between our visual world and what goes into creating it. Even in the discussions about the award winning Super Bowl ads, people attribute their success to the amount of money the ads cost to make, not to the creative ideas and artistic skill used in the production. Last year, in our school district, a decision was made to cut after school sports for budgetary reasons. The parents revolted, stating that the decision to cut sports would impair their child ‘s chances to play professionally. The district rescinded its decision and then used money earmarked for arts education to make up part of the budget shortfall. There were no art parents protesting that decision. To mainstream America, the arts are of less importance than sports. Who will create the brilliant ads for future Super Bowls if arts education continues to be a low priority? Who will perform at the half time show? Will sports fans even notice?