I agree with you completely Sharon (and I didn't know you had Oklahoma ties! let me know off list if you like when you graduated from OBU - several of my collegues are OBU grads).
Yes, I am convinced that the plan of the neo-conservatives (not the great old Repubs of the past) is to "starve the beast", like Grover Nordquist's quote that "I don't want to abolish government, I simply want to reduce it to the size where I can drag it into the bathroom and drown it in the bathtub".
There is no way I can say that this is not important to art education and to the arts in general.
This past week I attended the Oklahoma Fall Arts Institute at Quartz Mountain. I took an awesome acrylic course from James Winn, Jesus Morales taught granite, Don Nice watercolor, Katherine Liontas-Warren Renaissance drawing techniques, and more. Public school teachers get a full scholarship (except for Jesus's class, which they can fill at the full price). The printmaker (a longtime professor from Texas), when giving his presentation, said "I hope you people appreciate what you have here. If this were in Texas, there is no way GW would have allowed something like this to continue. He'd have shut it down years ago.". A few teachers booed! They booed a man who had taught ART in Texas for thirty years. Wouldn't he know what he was talking about???? I thought that was facinating. The truth hurts, I guess.
But yes, this administration has behaved as though they had an overwhelming mandate, when they actually lost the popular vote. It makes me physically queasy to imagine what we will face if they are given a second term.