Steve Adams has posed an important question (“Arts readers turned off,” Sept. 16): Is The Spokesman-Review’s reduction of visual arts and RV lifestyle coverage consistent with the paper’s aim “to reflect the life of our community every day in all of its wholeness and complexity”?
Desultory support for the creative arts and social growth may very well represent the attitude of the majority of the community’s citizens. Simultaneously, overwhelming support of “growth and development” activities may accurately reflect the self-interest core beliefs of the same community. Perceived economic benefits lead to more and more attention to real estate, commercial construction and other profit-motivated activities while less and less attention is directed at creative and social behavior. In the communication business, including politics, this means more attention to presumed economic growth and less attention to the growth of human social values.
If the true aim is to be a mirror for the community, The Spokesman-Review is on target. But if there is any intention on the part of the newspaper, or local political or business leadership, to make Spokane a humanly better community, a different course must be set.
Human values trump economic values every time in the history of durable cultures.
Question: Does the S-R have the responsibility to promote visual and creative arts whether or not the market demands such coverage?