Small cuts - big consequences

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By Sherry Robinson

A pretty young woman in a Harley Davidson tank top is describing to me in fine, enthusiastic detail the history of White Oaks, the one-time mining town and now satellite community of Carrizozo. She’s holding forth in the No Scum Allowed Saloon, where she works.
“I just love working in White Oaks, because the history is all around us,” she said.
I wanted to hug her. As it happened, a friend and I were returning from the annual meeting of the Historical Society of New Mexico held this year in Ruidoso.
Looking at its graying membership, I had wondered who will carry the torch – who will care about history?
The question took on greater urgency with the governor’s line-item vetoes of $75,000 in funding for a program of the New Mexico Humanities Council.
The legislature, after wrestling with the budget, decided to continue this modest support; the Education Governor thought otherwise.
In state-budget terms, this is pocket change, but its loss has consequences.
We’re about to lose History Day in New Mexico, a competition for students. New Mexico would become the only state without a student History Day.
On April 29 more than 250 students from schools across the state competed in the statewide contest; another 3,000 participated in local and regional contests.

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