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The E-Sylum:  Volume 9, Number 15, April 9, 2006, Article 24

ON FREE ADMISSION

Regarding a proposal to charge admission for the Smithsonian
Museums, last week I wrote: "It would be sad to see the tradition
end, but I think it's only fair that visitors help pay part of
the burden."

Pete Morelewicz writes: "The Smithsonian is supported by our tax
dollars. Similarly, a "road to nowhere" in Alaska, for example,
is paid for by tax dollars, even if few people ever use it. That
the Smithsonian be subject to usage fees when other, arguably
less important, projects are not is, in my opinion, ludicrous.
(Phew! -- needed to get that off my chest. Not having a vote in
Congress can subject one to such sudden outbursts.)

Oh, and the comparison to gun/coin/boat shows is faulty, as
these are not government-funded events."

[Government funding subsidizes public transportation, too, but
the rides aren't free, and I would argue that they shouldn't be.
Some part of the burden rightly rests on the user of the service.
But every taxpayer is entitled to an opinion.  -Editor]

  Wayne Homren, Editor

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