Trump administration to cut funding, it’s time to speak up

By Editorial Board

President Donald Trump’s first week in the Oval Office has been busy. Trump has signed 13 executive orders since his Jan. 20 inauguration day, as of press time. 

The orders include provisions allowing all agency heads to waive requirements of the Affordable Care Act. They also divert federal dollars from nonprofit organizations in the U.S. if they perform or promote abortions in foreign countries, according to a Jan. 24 BBC News article.

But the changes keep coming. 

According to a Jan. 19 The Hill article, Trump and his team will be asking Congress to make budget cuts that will knock $10.5 trillion off the federal debt in the next decade. 

The blueprint proposal, which the White House staff is still assembling, according to the article, will slash funding to a host of programs or eliminate them altogether. The targets in the Justice Department include the Office of Civil Rights, Office on Violence against Women, Environment and Natural Resources Division and programs that provide indigent representation and train police. In the Department of Energy, the Offices of Energy Efficiency, Renewable Energy and Fossil Energy are on the block. The National Endowment of the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities, which offer grants for artistic and educational productions, exhibitions, research and more, will also be eliminated, should the budget cuts pass.

These programs are vital to the health and welfare of U.S. citizens and must be viewed as such by the GOP. With conservatives dominating the three branches of government, these cuts have the potential to be approved. Because of that potential, Americans need to be proactive on this issue by being vocal and calling their local senators to vote “no” on the budget cuts.

Although a vast march can build confidence and community among activists, consistent pressure through smaller actions over a longer-period of time can be more powerful. 

The Women’s March on Jan. 21 reportedly consisted of nearly 500,000 women who marched in Washington D.C. alone protesting Trump’s inauguration. The country should follow this example to continue to move toward a more equal and stronger future. 

The march was about three times bigger than Trump’s inauguration crowd, according to a Jan. 22 New York Times article. All over the country—and the world—women marched in solidarity with each other, proving that the time has come for this generation to publicize the effects these programs have on present and future generations. 

The program cuts should be a bipartisan issue, rather than an attack on liberalism. Cutting the National Endowment of the Arts practically eliminates every opportunity for creativity in schools and has the potential to reduce jobs in the arts field. Cutting legal aid to the indigent and the Civil Rights movement is detrimental beyond belief. Programs for reducing violence against women, establishing LGBT rights and protecting the future of the environment should not be a “liberal” function. Everyone, regardless of political affiliation, needs to recognize these decisions will affect humanity in every capacity.