An Inclusive Litany
Okay, I'm beginning to understand. So, natural law informed the notion of liberty. You and I have both read—because of our backgrounds, I suspect—we've both read—I won't get into Aquinas and Augustine and all that, but Locke looked back to the concept of natural law as an evolving notion. Montesquieu talked about it. Jefferson understood it. He was in Paris. He was probably the only one that fully understood it. But others who were there writing the Constitution, they talked about it, they had what they wrote—both the Declaration, as you say, in other places and in the Constitution—they reduced these broad notions of natural law—the natural rights of man to this document.
Nine days before the [National Endowment for the Arts] advisory council met, the review panel was reconvened by telephone. Frohnmayer explained that "the record was not as complete as it might otherwise be" with respect to the Hughes, Miller and Fleck grants and said he wanted to deal with "the artistic issues."
The panelists praised all three artists and again voted unanimously to award the grants. "Though there may be backlashes and pain as a result of this, I really feel it's extremely important that we embrace the arts... We mustn't be afraid," one unidentified panelist said.
"Let me ask the very crass and difficult political question," Frohnmayer said. "What am I going to say when one of our critics comes in... and says, 'Geez, they funded a guy who whizzes onstage?' "
A panelist answered: "Who knows? Who cares? They're good."