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Sunshine Week ...

Amidst the debate about new gun control laws and President Trump’s proposed meeting with North Korean dictator Kim Jong-Un, we are in the midst of observing Sunshine Week.

As the name suggests, the week recognizes the American public’s right to public records and to know what it’s government is doing.

This tradition dates back to the founding of our republic more than 240 years ago, and ensures that we continue to enjoy a strong democracy that many of us take for granted.

Not that long ago, newspapers were the primary source of information for citizens about their government. Many of them functioned as watchdogs, as aptly portrayed by the recent movie, The Post.

Other sources of information now have changed that, of course, but newspapers’ influence is still strong. Many still represent independent, objective sources of news gathering about what government — particularly at the local level — is doing, unlike social media which is often inaccurate and subjective.

Nevertheless, Sunshine Week and what it means continues to recognize a requirement of a well-functioning democracy. That’s not something to be taken for granted.

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