Sunshine Week Comes To A Close

Sunshine Week is "a national initiative to promote a dialogue about the importance of open government and freedom of information."


Ah Sunshine. What a warm and cozy name for a pretty idea that in reality often lives in the deepest of dark, damp, secret places.

According to www.sunshineweek.org, "Sunshine Week seeks to enlighten and empower people to play an active role in their government at all levels, and to give them access to information that makes their lives better and their communities stronger. Individuals and public officials who embody the spirit of government transparency and fight for it in their communities are recognized each year with Local Hero Awards."

The website, proclaimed to be created by journalists, is covered with blindingly sweet words and catch phrases such as "sunrise," sunshine," sunlight," and "sun hats."

Seriously? Who are these journalists? Perhaps they stared into the light too long.

In reality, no matter how brightly the rays shine on the law -- freshly laundered with bluebirds hanging it from licorice clotheslines -- shhhhhh, I'm whisper screaming here so the powers that be can't hear: THERE'S A FREAKIN DARK SIDE!

Think it's easy to get whatever information you want from the government? Try it. Depending on location and person in charge, obtaining what should be public information can become a private fight.

And here at home, think the state's Office of Open Records, created to enforce Pennsylvania's Right-To-Know law, has the power to guide you through the darkness? Think again.

tom blair March 16, 2012 at 12:03 PM
Government acting in secret gets worse with every administration. This is a very important topic - thanks for covering it.
Tom Bartman March 17, 2012 at 12:56 AM
"access to information that makes their lives better and their communities stronger." How sweet. I feel so comforted. I love the picture they paints with their collection of marketing buzzwords out of chapter 5 of my marketing textbook: Enlighten, empower, better, stronger, transparency, hero... I am enlightened. I want to go out and hug an 'occupier'. Their description is like reading one of those environmental articles where we all need to drive electric clown cars and get power from bird blending 'green' windmills as the world transforms into a perfect place of harmony and unity.


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