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Thanks for nothing, Mr. Collins



It’s like I’ve said all along. Politicians have an inbred aversion to such things as flowers, paintings, dancers, actors, plays, and literature. Oh right, and library access.

See, when you run government like a rich businessman business, you can’t really understand why other people would need any of the things you’ve taken for granted (though clearly ignored) for your entire life.

I wonder how many politicians rely on the Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens. Many garden lovers from across the US saw this magnificent facility last summer, during Garden Bloggers Buffa10. It needs work—and hopefully will continue to get it—but what it has right now is enough to entrance local families on a regular basis and impress out-of-town visitors whenever they get a chance to see it. It is one of three Lord & Burnham conservatories sited in an Olmsted park. It has the largest collection of ivy in the U.S. and it is the one place in Western New York where you can escape to the tropics in a twenty minute drive. In February.

Garden writerss from Idaho, North Carolina, and Wisconsin thought the BG was a pretty cool place in July, when they visited.

That might impress some people, but clearly it is not enough for the leader of our county, who has withheld funding from the facility for 2010 and plans the same treatment in 2011.

Look, we all know money is tight. But those of us who pay attention also know that the funds allocated to the Botanical Gardens and every other cultural organization in the area—AND the libraries—would not be enough to make a $2 dent in anyone’s property taxes. Seriously.

Fund the gardens. Fund the theaters. Fund the galleries. And for gods sake, fund the libraries. We can’t afford to have another generation growing up as ignorant as YOU, Mr. Collins, clearly are.

If you agree and want to help, here's an email, bmw@erie.gov, and here's a phone number: 716-842-0490.

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