On Dec. 22, The Journal News, published in White Plains, New York posted an interactive map of everyone in Westchester and Rockland counties that have a gun permit. Thousands of law abiding citizens had their names and addresses made public for every criminal in the area to know that they own a firearm.
Many of those gun owners were irate and complained to The Journal News who replied to their complaints with the following:
“[Our readers] are understandably interested to know about guns in their neighborhoods…We obtained the names and addresses of Westchester and Rockland residents who are licensed to own handguns through routine Freedom of Information law requests. We also requested information on the number and types of guns owned by permit holders, but officials in the county clerks’ offices in Westchester, Rockland and Putnam counties maintained that those specifics were not public record.”
Gun owners and organizations are now going after The Journal News to hit them where it hurts – their pocketbooks. Among those is the New York State Rifle and Pistol Association which is trying to get every gun owner and pro-gun organization nationwide to boycott The Journal News and pull all advertising away from them. They are also recommending that all gun owners and supporters stop doing any business with any company that advertises with them, such as Best Buy, CVE, IKEA and Target to name a few. If the companies start losing business because of it, they’ll be forced to pull their advertising which will financially impact the irresponsible media outlet.
My question for The Journal News is to ask if they are willing to accept the legal responsibility and liability for any crimes committed against the gun owners identified in their online post? Prior to the post, no one had any clue who owned a gun and where those guns were located. Now, thanks to The Journal News, every criminal in the area knows where the guns are and what houses to target. I would not be surprised to see a spike in home invasions and burglaries to take place at those homes listed in the online post. If I were one of those gun owners, I would be keeping my guns loaded and handy and ready to shoot anyone who tried to break in. Then I would file a federal lawsuit against The Journal News for placing me and my household in unnecessary danger because of their post.
The Journal News – are you ready to be held liable for your irresponsible actions that are placing thousands in danger? I hope you have a good team of lawyers because I bet you’re going to need them.