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Without a Vision, the People Perish

February 17, 2015

Mayor and Councilmembers
City of Frisco

Dear Mayor and Council:


On behalf of the Frisco Performing Arts Coalition, I am writing to each of you to encourage your support to permit the citizens of Frisco to vote on the bond proposition that would be used to fund (in-part) a performing and visual arts center in Frisco (see agenda Item 30 [G]).

As I drafted this letter to you yesterday, I found this relevant quote from Ronald Reagan,

“Art is one of the most important forms of human expression. Whether as creators or as spectators, Americans participate in the arts in some form almost every day, and their lives are made richer by this activity. Art also brings us into contact with the rich aesthetic tradition of our civilization, while the art of other cultures can be one of the best introductions available for those who want to learn more about them.” (Proclamation 5348 – Very Special Arts USA Month, 1985 – May 29, 1985.)

As history shows, Reagan was not always a proponent of the arts, and intended to abolish the National Endowment for the Arts, however he didn’t. To the contrary, he became a strong advocate for the arts and through his two terms and with his vision, he created many opportunities – publicly funded opportunities – that developed a healthier and more vibrant role for the arts in today’s society. Today in Frisco, we have a similar opportunity to extend the vision to be more inclusive of the arts and the contribution that the arts makes to our city’s culture.

Sadly, the arts remains a political issue in Frisco, and the establishment of the Frisco Arts PAC not only recognizes this reality, but highlights that we will have a long journey ahead of us. The issue before you on Tuesday night is not about whether Frisco should or should not have a performing and visual arts center, but whether the citizens will be given the right to decide if this should be a part of the vision and future for our city.

We the citizens of Frisco are looking to you, our Council, to build on the vision of city leaders before you, to think outside the box, and to continue to keep Frisco as the best city to live, work and play. As Reagan shared during his 1985 State of the Union speech, “[w]ithout a vision the people perish.” Your support of this bond recommendation will be part of your vision and legacy for our city. I encourage you to vote in favor of of the Citizen’s Bond Committee recommendation to support the approval of $10 million for a performing arts/cultural center.

James Nunn