Here is an IELTS Writing Task 2 topic that I recently discussed with my students.
In many countries, the government sponsorship of the arts costs millions of taxpayers’ money. There are many more important things to spend money on. Do you agree?
There are some who claim that it is important to maintain the arts, and an equal number of people who are opposed to continued governments funding. I am in favor of this latter point for several reasons.
The strongest point is that money spent on the arts could have been used for considerable more vital purposes. While I admit that the arts are important to a country’s identity, it must also be given that a nation’s health and wellbeing should be paramount. The idea that elderly people are forced to wait for essential operations whilst the money required to increase available medical provision is spent on opera and ballet is plainly immoral.
In addition to health concerns, there are also more deserving social causes for the money that should be considered before the arts. Homelessness, unemployment, single mothers, and the crime rate – all of those issues deserve to be addressed before money is spent on what is essentially little more than entertainment.
A third factor is that some people have no interest in preserving or funding the arts, feeling that they have little practical value. If the arts are so much in need of sponsorship, then perhaps this is a reflection of their lack of popularity, in which case they should not be supported. The money could go to more popular events instead.
For each of these reasons, it can be concluded that there is little reason to continue funding the arts. Yet perhaps a compromise could be reached by which those keen to maintain the arts could raise a percentage of their own funds and the government could reduce its level of sponsorship.