This article originally ran on the Examiner.com website. As of this morning the Amber Alert Website is back up.
So what is that all about? One day it is unessential, the next day it is? One day they have no money to run it, the next day they do?
Many of the media is saying that Obama/the government is arbitrary shutting things down and after the Amber Alert website incident it sure seems that way. What do you think?
Many of you know that the government is still “closed,” but did you know that government websites were also “closed”?
Not all are down, a cursory look shows that the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs is up, although the call centers, hotlines and regional offices are not. The Social Security Administration is working although services to seniors may not be available. The Federal Trade Commission, the Library of Commerce and NASA is down.
And it is not just websites, the national parks are closed and if you want to apply for a small business loan, you might as forget about that for awhile.
And to fully get the impact of this situation the USA.gov website states:
“Hundred of thousands of Federal employees including many charged with protecting us from terrorist threats, defending our borders, inspecting our food, and keeping our skies safe will work without pay until the shutdown ends.”
I can’t imagine the worry some employees must be going through as they try to make their last paycheck stretch so they can feed their family.
As a person that writes about missing person stories, you are probably wondering why I am on this subject. Well, it was brought to my attention by several people that there is another government website down that not many people are aware of, it is the America’s Missing Broadcast Emergency Response website or as most people know it, Amber Alert. When you click on the website, there is nothing there, but a blank page, a Department of Justice emblem and the words, “Due to the lapse in federal funding, this Office of Justice Programs (OJP) website is unavailable.”
Many on social media are irate and comments of disbelief are shared by all.
“United States Botanic Garden website? Up. Amber Alert website? Down,” posted SunnyRight.
“By all means, let’s turn over healthcare decision making to people willing to shut down the Amber Alert website out of spite,” posted Jason B. Whitman.
KUSA Channel 9 checked with the Colorado Bureau of Investigation and they confirmed it’s only the federal website that aggregates alerts that is down, but Amber Alerts continue to be issued and investigated around the country, as they are issued by the state anyway.
Even so, the fact the website is down at all, is certainly confusing. How much could it possible cost to leave a website up? Leaving it up would allow people to continue to look at photos of missing children, especially if they thought they had seen a missing child.
What is even more confusing is that sites like First Lady Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” campaign is up, the United States Environmental Protection Agency, United States Department of Justice and the Office of Personnel Management.
Katie Pavlich posted on Twitter, “Oh your kid got kidnapped? Sorry, the resources for the AMBER alert have been diverted so Michelle Obama can teach people how to drink water.”
The HealthCare.gov website, also referred to as “Obama Care” is also up with a convenient reminder that you have 176 days left to enroll.
The Conservative Daily News stated that “Obama’s favorite golf course on Andrews Air Force Base remains open during the government shutdown,” but the grocery stores on base are closed, forcing the service men and women to go off base.
The press pool on social media posted the White House announced a travel/photo lid for Obama today, which means Obama was not leaving the White House. Many were betting he would be golfing on such a beautiful sunny day. Maybe he decided to stay in and surf the web, instead.