Via Gun Nuts Media we get some of the lowest of the low from a “respected news source.” In this case we have an editorial writer comparing those of us with handgun carry permits to sex offenders:
Say, for example, you want to find out whether there are any convicted child molesters living in your neighborhood. You have young children, and like any good parent, you look up the information on available Web sites. Your research uncovers several living in your neighborhood. If you want to know whether they have permits to carry a gun, you can get that information. This bill, however, would prohibit that information from being made known.
Let’s step back a minute. First of all if a person is in a sex offender registry they have most likely committed a felony meaning they won’t be in the carry permit holder database. Second the implications of comparing law abiding citizens with clean records to child molesters is sickening. Just think about that for a minute. They are implying that those of us who hold permits to carry handguns are in the same class as those who have molested a child. A child molester is one of the most hated people in the country, they don’t even have a good life expectancy in prison because the prisoners hate them.
Of course the news paper wasn’t satisfied with just doing that. Let’s throw in the possibility of racism:
It also will be nearly impossible to find out whether police or other members are denying permits to legitimate applicants, maybe because of race or names that might denote a Muslim background, for example.
Oh OK I guess having a database of permit holders is OK because it will help fight racism. That makes so much sense. Except it doesn’t. This pretty much states that if you support keeping the names of those with carry permits secret you’re racist. At the moment that’s the gold card for those who don’t agree with you, accuse them of racism.
Let’s look at what the actual problems with publishing these names are. First and foremost there are people out there who obtain a carry permit for protection against a known potential threat. Often time these permit holders want their address kept secret so the potential threat can’t find them. Likewise many permit holders carry concealed because they don’t want people knowing they have a gun. See it’s a lot easier to survive a self defense situation if you have the element of surprise. It takes time, however brief, to for the human brain to deal with surprising criteria and that time could save your life. On the other hand if a criminal were targeting you or your family they would likely check to see if you had a carry permit and adjust their tactics as necessary. I’ll not even get into the whole shit storm of marketing people using the database as a mailing list.
Finally the author states the following:
As for allowing journalists access to generalized data: That information is useless. About all that could be gleaned is how many permits were issued and in what city or county — maybe.
Obviously the author doesn’t understand the wonderful world of data mining. A surprising amount of information can be derived from a little amount of data. From a person’s address you can theorize, quite accurately, their wealth (If they life in a upper class neighborhood for instance), the potential of having a family (A larger home often implies family versus an apartment), the car they drive (Parked out front often), and the hours they keep (Through observing their house and watching the times they come and go). This is just the icing on the cake obviously.
But the author obviously has a disconnection from reality as he thinks carry permit holders are in the same class of concern as sex offenders.
The bottom line is the anti-gun crowd love this database because it discriminates against gun owners gives reason for people to not obtain a carry permit (Personal information being published). An open database of carry permit holders has nothing to do with public safety and everything to do with social control.