By Roeland Fernhout on January 15, 2011
The very first time I ever went to the theater I was about 8 years old. I still remember how the lights went out, and there I sat. In the dark. Which sent me into a blind panic. But fortunately the lights went on again, and a world still unknown to me revealed itself. A world, where imagination ruled.
From then on I started visiting that world of imagination more often. Imagination is not escapism. Fantasizing, dreaming, imagining something which goes beyond the everyday world, makes a man grow. You sharpen your senses, you sharpen your moral compass, you sharpen your ability to move up in the world.
Make no mistake: It’s not the ‘cultural sector’, which is being cut in its budget. It is your imagination, which gets cut. The ability of a country, of a nation to dream another world is being cut. A better world, or a worse world, but a different world. It’s exactly that dreaming which seeps into the real world. It ensures that we don’t just take the world for granted, but we contemplate it. That we weigh the world, that we can reconsider our world. A country, which loses that power is a poor country. A nation, which no longer dreams, is dead.
This government wants to cut back on your imagination. And what disappears won’t ever return. This government tells you: “Just don’t dream. Don’t imagine yourself anything”. This government wants to rule a nation which won’t get any crazy ideas in their heads.
The lights will go out.
And it will become dark.