Gun owners in New York’s Westchester and Rockland counties received lumps of coal in their Christmas stockings this year.
No, Santa didn’t punish them for being on the naughty list but The Journal News (@LoHud) published names and addresses of those citizens who are licensed to own pistols and revolvers.
I won’t publish the link to the Newspaper site since they don’t deserve anymore traffic but here is the CNN story and a few quotes from it:
“(CNN) — An interactive map showing the names and addresses of all handgun permit-holders in New York’s Westchester and Rockland counties has drawn a response from mostly disgruntled readers since it was posted Saturday on a newspaper’s website.”
“The interactive map published by the Journal News, prompting more than 1,300 comments as of Tuesday, allows readers to zoom in on red dots that indicate which residents are licensed to own pistols or revolvers.”
I don’t even know where to start.
The names and addresses of sex offenders are routinely published but that is in the interest of public safety since these individuals have been CONVICTED of crimes that make them a threat. I have no problem with this or publishing names and addresses of public figures that are ‘in the news’ since these individuals signed up for this scrutiny by the nature of their chosen profession. But the publishing of names and addresses of private citizens (without their permission I might add) who have not committed any crime is unconscionable.
Why was this done?
In an attempt to answer this question, I sent an email to The Journal News editor, CynDee Royle and here is a copy of this email with my email address redacted (As I’ll show below, Ms. Croyle’s email address is publicly available so I didn’t redact it):
This is public information, readily available to anyone who has a computer or access to one. Sent from my iPhone On Dec 24, 2012, at 3:10 PM, Cosmoscon <firstname.lastname@example.org>> wrote: Who gave permission to print this? You should be fired. Will you print the addresses to all the staff at LoHud?
I replied with this follow-up question:
“There is a lot of information available with a little searching (such as my home address) but why does a newspaper choose to publish information on people that aren’t “in the news” (i.e. they have not broken any laws, not famous, etc.). What criteria do you use when contemplating publication of law abiding citizens’ home addresses?”
To my great surprise, I received no reply.
Knowing how Leftists think, I can only assume that the Journal News did this to give the public information about those who own pistols and revolvers so people can avoid danger. Of course this is nonsense and the only outcome of this release of information is to give criminals information where they can obtain firearms through theft or, worse, target houses that DON’T have firearms.
So why does The Journal News stop here? Will they publish the names and addresses of people who own large pickup trucks? Traffic fatalities in New York occur at a rate of 6.3 per 100,000, deaths from firearms occur at a rate of 5.1 per 100,000 and from this study, large pickup trucks provide a higher risk of fatality to other drivers. Will The Journal News publish names and addresses of people who drive large pickup trucks? See the graph below:
If the Journal News was trying to raise awareness of a major threat in the US then murders from guns shouldn’t be at the top of their list. From the latest Center for Disease Control (CDC) estimated cause of death data for 2010, Murders have dropped from the top 15 for the first time since 1965. Diabetes and Heart Disease are listed in the top 10 so will the Journal News publish names and addresses of fast food restaurant owners?
If The Journal News is making a habit of publishing data that is “readily available to anyone who has a computer or access to one” then we can expect them to publish names and addresses of people who own a home worth, say, a million dollars or more. That data is also readily available from country tax records so what is preventing them from publishing this data as well?
What criteria does The Journal News use when they are deciding whether or not to publish names and addresses of private citizens? The citizens of Westchester and Rockland counties deserve to know this.
It appears that the Journal News is just another typical Leftist organization hell bent on demonizing the tens of millions of law abiding gun owners in the US because of the few evil people who make the news when they use an illegally obtained firearms to murder innocent people. Call me crazy but I think the resources at The Journal News would be better served in trying to identify the criminals that have illegal firearms instead of attempting to vilify law abiding gun owners.
If The Journal News is comfortable publishing names and addresses that are “readily available to anyone who has a computer or access to one” then I’d like to follow their lead.
Here is the LinkedIn site for CynDee Royle:
Ms. Royle’s twitter account is @Croyle1 and her account is protected (you can’t see her tweets) but you can still tweet to her.
Here are the names, phone numbers and email addresses of the staff of The Journal News.
Tell them how you feel about this!
Well, Cosmo, one thing is for certain: the criminals now KNOW where the best homes are to A) Stay away from, and; B) which homeowners are unarmed and make a good target for a home break in, even IF the homeowner is present.
Personally, I’d like EVERY criminal in the area to know that the steps they take through my front door will be the last they ever take……
I love how you blog!
Need to take out a full page add with this info in her own newpaper.
Evil and she doesn’t even know it.
I’ll let her know though.
Thanks soooo much for the kind words. And yes, that newspaper just did an evil act and they don’t even know it. Leftists are clueless to the consequences of their actions.
According to the National Insurance Crime Bureau, the most popular, easiest to steal car in America, for the last four years, is a 1994 Honda Accord. Perhaps the Journal News could continue their trend in helping criminals by publishing a map to hand gun homes that also own a 1994 Honda Accord.
Also, It would be helpful if the Journal News would publish who has burglar alarms and big dogs.
It will be interesting to see burglary statistics for the next few months for homes with hand guns. If there is a statistically significant spike in burglaries of homes with handguns, the Journal News will probably win a Pulitzer Prize.
You raise a great point about crime rates on the homes listed in The Journal News article. There could be lawsuits against the paper if one of these listed addresses is robbed.
Cosmo, You scooped Drudge!
Drudge had a link about this story from the CS Monitor. Another blogger made a map of the home addresses of the Journalists
One thing I hadn’t thought of is that there were a number of policemen’s addresses published that potentially puts them in danger of retaliation from people they arrested.
Some states have laws against publication of “Private Facts.” However, New York
doesn’t have one and even if it did, it would probably not apply.
There have been many other bloggers that went in far more detail than I did here and they have the home addresses of all The Journal News staffers. It’s only fair to use their own rules against them!
Fortunately, the First Amendment guarantees the right to print almost anything except libel and The Journal News is only printing publicly available information. There will be no cause of action even if there is a sharp rise in gun thefts from private homes.
However, don’t loose heart. It’s very hard to imagine anyone The Journal News makes a target continuing to buy their paper.
Gannett owns The Journal News. Gannett’s revenue was down 20% last year and has been declining just as fast as that other liberal bastion, The New York Times.
The Journal News is only hastening it’s own death. I for one, can’t wait.