I don’t think conservatives understand what removing public funding for PBS actually does for PBS.
Yes, Sesame Street merchandise could pay for a fuckton of PBS’s costs of operation.
But you know what that does?
It makes PBS for profit. And suddenly it gets a whole lot less educational. Suddenly Nova, Cosmos, etc-like programs become Ancient Aliens. Suddenly Sesame Street, Arthur, etc become Boobahs, Hannah Montana, and some cartoon with a lot of fart jokes.
PBS doesn’t DIE when you defund it. But it might as well.