Every time I see the word sunshine, my mind immediately jets back to that scene in the best sports movie of all time, “Remember the Titans.”
Ronnie “Sunshine” Bass, played by Kip Pardue, is the new kid on the mixed-race football team. Donning recently shortened blonde locks straight out of California, his teammate Rev begins to softly singsong his given nickname — Sunshine, Sunshine.
Tauntingly, the team chimes in and begins to razz each other with “Yo Momma” jokes. Sunshine is small and skinny, a drastic difference to the large, sculpted footballers doing some light-hearted joking.
Despite the light hazing all around, Sunshine dishes it right back in the face of the most influential player on the team, Gary Bertier. Sunshine taunts him right back and BOOM goes in for a kiss, a most unconventional way of standing up to his adversary. The result? Eventual respect and acceptance.
We all can learn a bit from our beach bud. Having respect and confidence in who you are leads to living a transparent and truthful life, a concept we emphasize at The Sheridan Press.
This week, journalists nationwide celebrate sunshine in the form of shining light on the public’s right to know, also known as Sunshine Week. According to a press release from the Wyoming Press Association, over the course of 15 years, newspaper closures and consolidations have left more than 1,400 cities across the U.S. without their main source of regular local news.
Newspapers serve an important role in a community. Reporters are here to attend as many meetings led by public officials as they can fit in a week, sometimes being the only attendees outside of staff. The reporters then condense a three-hour meeting into chewable bites, sharing the most pertinent information for those public entities’ constituents.
We’re the Sunshine of the football team; sometimes not well liked by either side of the spectrum, but we work to earn the respect of everyone around us. We try and report as accurately and succinctly as possible, keeping our elected officials in check and our community informed.
When local news coverage continues to diminish throughout the nation, The Sheridan Press is proud to remain a strong and steady staple.
So, help us shine the light this week. Pick up a paper or log in online, and read the important stories impacting our community today.
If you have any questions on how to access public documents, contact elected officials or sift through difficult legal jargon, I and my staff of reporters are always happy to sit down and help dig.