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Old January 4, 2013, 01:06 PM   #51
Maxb49
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You know what's really frightening? The subject of today's letters to the editor in the New York Times is whether or not the Constitution as a whole should be abolished.
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Old January 4, 2013, 01:22 PM   #52
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They are using 1st Amendment rights, and that's well and good as far as it goes.

However, they are not the only ones who can use 1st Amendment rights, and nowhere does the Constitution guarantee that any words or actions can't have consequences.

In other words, they are free to say what they want, and be free of government interference (for the most part) and retribution. But they are not insulated against private responses, or economic backlash.

Turnabout is fair game.
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Old January 4, 2013, 11:16 PM   #53
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Here a point, the hipocracy of the paper...what they did, we consider reckless, irresponsible, and putting people in danger (and the list/map cuts both ways, it shows who has permits, and who doesn't). And they are saying "we have a First Amendment right to do this!" And, they are correct, the do have the right.

However, we are not saying they have to be shut down. We are not saying they have to be banned. All we want is them to be responsible. All our rights have limitations, which we, as responsible people recognize.

Your right to swing your fist ends at my nose, etc....

But the media is not saying we need to be responsible, they are saying we need to be abolished. No guns. No gun owners. Guns are bad. They hurt people.

Well, when someone gets killed, because a thief/rapist/what have you broke into their home, instead of one on the map, where he had been told there was a permitted handgun, then isn't the paper just as responsible? Should we then cry for newspapers to be banned? Or, just restricted in what they can print?

They have a right to what they are doing. They have a responsibility to do no harm. We have a right to what we are doing. And we have great responsibility. IF it is the correct thing to take away our rights because some individual was grossly irresponsible, then it is the correct thing to take their rights also.

"Hey, you can't compare mass murder to a newpaper story!!!"

Can't you? Harm is harm. What varies is the degree. IF the principle is valid, then it is valid. If it isn't, then shut the hell up about banning guns!
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Old January 5, 2013, 02:44 AM   #54
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They paper publishes the information they maintain as a public service so that one's neighbors can know who near them has a permit to have a gun. Why? The implication and the meaning from the papers articles are clear... they believe the owner of a legal firearm is a possible threat to others. Or at least they want their readers to think so.

It's part of creating a hysteria (also maybe readership) it's also a very real threat.

The argument that the public has "a right to know" and that "full disclosure" and "transparency" are useful and progressive things for the people as a whole is wrong. In some cases yes but not in all cases and not in this one.

Publishing the names of permit holders implies that these people are a threat in some way to the broader community. But there is no history of that. The holders of these permits have broken no laws, to the contrary. So why in effect accuse them of being a threat.

It holds the permit holders up to threats of violence, chastisement, ostracism, possible trouble at their work or school, possibly danger and more. Publishing the names and home addresses of police officers, witnesses to crimes etc. is never a good idea and that is what has been done here.
All for no valid legal reason.

Legally it can be stopped by a court injunction.

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Old January 5, 2013, 08:56 AM   #55
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My rights end when they infringe on yours. Your rights end when they infringe on mine. (credit not taken & don't know who to give it to)
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Old January 5, 2013, 09:21 AM   #56
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Quote:
I think the question raised by others about, "Would you have done this with a list of same-sex married couples?" should actually be asked of one or two of those editors and reporters.

I would be very curious to hear their answers.
The papers would print the names and addresses of reporters, editor, janitors even - plus throw in home phone and personal cell numbers - in a heartbeat....

If they thought for one second it would sell more papers, which in turn would mean selling more advertising space.

"Responsible" journalism died a quick death at the hands of Hearst when propaganda displaced journalism.
Most people know about Hearst and the Spanish American War - but - not too many know about Hearst and Annie Oakley.

Today, with newspapers poised on becoming as scarse as record stores, the papers will do anything they can to survive..
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Old January 5, 2013, 10:48 AM   #57
pnac
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Good post about Hearst, Hal. "Give me the pictures and I'll give you the war!"

Check out this article, inmates are using the list to threaten prison guards.


Quote:
Journal News gun permit map endangers officers, officials say
Quote:
Inmates at the Rockland County jail are taunting corrections officers by saying they know the guards' home addresses -- information they got from the list published by Westchester-based newspaper, Rockland County Sheriff Louis Falco said.
http://newyork.newsday.com/news/nati...-say-1.4407323
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Old January 5, 2013, 11:02 AM   #58
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From the article linked by pnac:

Quote:
Legis. Aron Wieder (D-Spring Valley) called the publication of the list "irresponsible journalism" and said he now fears for his safety because the map broadcast that he does not have a gun license. At the news conference Friday morning, he handed a $150 certified check and a completed pistol permit application to Rockland County Clerk Paul Piperato.
"I never owned a gun but now I have no choice," Wieder said. "I have been exposed as someone that has no gun. And I'll do anything, anything to protect my family."
I kind of enjoyed that one, as well as the complaints by the prison guards, sheriffs, and PBA.

Nothing against the COs or LEOs, and in fact I do not support publishing their personal info, but it did provide irony in the sense that I don't think the paper had thought it through, at all. So I don't enjoy the CO/LEO predicament, but do enjoy the consternation this must be causing newspapers nationwide that had not considered this aspect of such lists.

I did not enjoy this lady's predicament, but this should have been forseeable; we predicted this exact scenario in our previous TFL commentary:

Quote:
Orangetown resident Charlotte Swift, 55, handed out lists of the newspaper's employees linked to the article, with their home addresses and phone numbers, as well as local politicians who can have an influence on the bill in Albany.
Swift said she has owned a gun for more than 20 years and her name is on the published list.
"When I saw the list, I had an immediate flood of emotions that I cannot even describe to you," said Swift. "I originally obtained a gun permit because I had previously been married to a man who attempted to strangle me . . . The first emotion I felt was, 'Oh my gosh, he can find me.'"
She also feared burglars might break into her own home and those of her neighbors who do not have guns.
"It clearly had no journalistic purpose," Swift said of the database. "In my mind, I felt intimidated, I felt threatened by them . . . and regardless of what The Journal News intended, what was their purpose in publishing it? It really didn't give any information to people that help them in their everyday lives."

Last edited by MLeake; January 5, 2013 at 11:09 AM.
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Old January 6, 2013, 07:24 PM   #59
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Just as an update, the Putnam County (borders on Westchester County where information was released) County Clerk has refused to release the pistol permit information to The Journal News. Will be interesting to see where that leads.

http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2013/01/...info-to-paper/

On a different note, I'm a little surprised The Journal News's sister Gannett publication the Poughkeepsie Journal has been fairly quiet. I've not heard of any requests being made for the Dutchess County pistol permit records.


(Edit, added link)

Last edited by Cascade1911; January 6, 2013 at 07:38 PM.
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Old January 6, 2013, 07:24 PM   #60
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It would be nice if some sort of class-action suit could be brought by the afflicted against the newspaper for essentially making criminals out of law-abiding citizens; after all, these people do not fall under the "public figure" doctrine (if that would apply). Just my opinion.
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Old January 7, 2013, 11:34 AM   #61
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Rockland County Times exposes Journal News Gun List Crowd.

Here is a link to an excellent source of info regarding the publication of pistol permit holders addresses on an interactive map.

http://www.rocklandcountytimes.com/
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Old January 7, 2013, 12:03 PM   #62
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Interesting and unsurprising developments:

http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer...g-threats.html

http://www.poynter.org/latest-news/m...ews-publisher/

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/07/ny...rget.html?_r=0

They keep saying they are getting threatening calls and Emails. I wonder why the police are not doing anything about it if true?

This is not the first time Gannett has done this. They did it a while ago in Roanoke, VA after the VA Tech killings.

There is one lawsuit pending already too:

http://www.topix.com/com/gci/2013/01...-of-gun-owners
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Old January 7, 2013, 12:21 PM   #63
Hal
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Wouldn't it be hilarious if the paper was making up all the threats or was actually behind all the threats & it was all a publicity stunt?

That was my first thought when they pulled that armed guard dog and pony show.

I wonder if we'd ever hear anything about it if that was the case?
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Old January 7, 2013, 12:32 PM   #64
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I imagine it is more a case of perception than anything. Although I don't preclude general nuttiness either. Media companies get lots of threats every year.
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Old January 7, 2013, 07:38 PM   #65
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Hal, I don't think the papers will print anything just to sell papers. They are on a Crusade. Sales of print media have been going down for years, even before widespread online access. One reason is that many folks get tired of paying to support the Crusade of the Month.
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Old January 7, 2013, 07:43 PM   #66
pnac
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Now they've really done it, some has published a map of Texas gun owners!

http://www.spartanburgteaparty.org/2...as-gun-owners/
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Old January 8, 2013, 12:22 PM   #67
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The TX map is incomplete. They missed some on the islands.
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