After reading the recent letter to the editor by Jim Darter (Reasons for GRAMA, HB 477, Sun Advocate, April 5, 2011) ) and several others written by publisher Richard Shaw, it seems that there are still individuals that still do not get it. Jim's letter included a response by Representative Patrick Painter and also included many valid reasons that the GRAMA law should be revisited.
I think we would all agree that we are due a certain amount of privacy. That privacy should not be breached for any reason other than when we have been part of or have committed a crime. Professional, ecclesiastical, and personal privacy should remain private, and here again, I believe we would all agree there.
There is a disconnection between our elected officials and those that they govern. Richard Shaw has valiantly tried to point this out and to have Representative Painter blame the problem on the press is wrong. As a public official you give up a certain amount of privacy. People expect to have their government in the open. After all, it's our government not the politician's. If you want to rewrite the law do it in the open. This is something that Representative Watkins understood. This is something that Richard Shaw understood. Sadly, there were many that did not understand and the bill was pulled when the people of this state caught their government's hand in the cookie jar.
I would personally like to thank Richard Shaw and Representative Watkins for standing up for me, you and the rest of this great state. The learning curve has been great as I have been able to watch from the outside looking in this time. Had I won the spot on the ticket in place of Representative Painter in the last election, I would hope that I would have been the other Republican to have stood up and said no.