I found your article really interesting as at my university, they encouraged the graphic designers to take art classes and find ways to combine the two. We had several conversations about if art and mix with design or not. And while I think you make several good points, I do think that art and design can be harmonious. But I do agree that many people don’t want to just call themselves artists because there is that bias against it. I think that more people need to recognize art’s value again because being an artist takes a lot of time, passion, work, and money, just like any other career. And I think that even now, graphic design faces similar bias.
I recently saw a post someone wrote on LinkedIn where they made a blanket statement about how design isn’t a good field to go into vs being a lawyer because they believed you don’t have many job prospects. While I understood his point was to think more critically about what we major in with the rising costs of college, blanket statements towards one degree can really hurt public perception of it. Everyone needs design whether they recognize it or not and college students have a hard enough time as it is trying to get paid for their work (i.e unpaid internships) that they don’t need people making it harder.