Please understand the reason for the protest show

February 15, 2019
By Marcy Shortuse

To the Editor:
Please let me explain my actions regarding the protest art show I just hosted at my gallery. I have a problem, you see, a problem with pollution because I am an asthmatic. I can’t breath the air if there are too many nasty things in it, and I have to go to the emergency room if it gets too bad. The great thing about that is when you are having a severe asthma attack they rush you right into the ER, right past the broken bones and the flowing blood, because asthma is that deadly. Some have asked me why would I risk my financial success by hosting such an event? Well it’s because it really doesn’t matter if I can’t breathe, you see. And then there is that other thing I care about: leaving something of value to my grandchildren and their children. You can leave them all the money in the world when you pass, but if they can’t live on the planet you left behind, what is the point?
I believe that we are all to blame for the current situation, this environmental disaster, and we all must take action. I’ve had my say, along with all the other artists who joined up (thank you all again very much), and now I am back to painting my usual subjects, without dead birds and dead fish. But that doesn’t mean I’m finished yet, as long as I can breathe, that is. I’m like the canary in the mine shaft; you can call me a Yankee canary, I don’t mind at all, but take heed: When the canary dies, you are next.
Gail Cleveland,
co-owner of Smart Studio Art Gallery
Boca Grande