EDINBURG, Texas – The CEO of the Museum of South Texas History says cities that are more tolerant and have a good cultural arts scene tend to be more economically vibrant.

Francisco Guajardo spoke about the subject at a recent Edinburg2040 town hall meeting. The meeting was held at the Edinburg Boys & Girls Club.

Guajardo said Edinburg, with its university, museum, and school district, is different.

“If you look at the arts across South Texas, Edinburg has been a leader in the generation of the arts, in the generation of the creatives,” Guajardo said. “Creativity breeds tolerance, attracts people to the place. And other places don’t quite have that.”

Guajardo, a former professor at UT-Rio Grande Valley in Edinburg, referenced a well-known book by Richard Florida, “The Rise of the Creative Class.” Citing the author, Guajardo said: “The most creative communities in this country are the communities that invest in the arts. And those communities tend to be the most tolerant communities. And it just so happens that those communities tend to be the most economically vibrant communities.”

Guajardo added: “So, squash creativity and you you squash economic development. You squash tolerance people won’t want to come here. This community is not that. This community invites difference. And that is a virtue, I think.”

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