Sunday May 20, 2018

Local Paper Publishes List of #Handgun Permit Holders

(image: Journal News)

Westchester and Rockland county residents were upset after a local paper disclosed the names and addresses of area handgun permit-holders. The Journal News published an interactive map listing the information on their site over the weekend. In a statement, the paper’s editor and vice president CynDee Royle, said that after the Newtown shooting, comments on their website have been “keenly focused on gun control.” More than 1,300 commenters responded to the map, saying they would cancel subscriptions and boycott the paper. According to CNN, one reader wrote, “So should we start wearing yellow Stars of David so the general public can be aware of who we are??”

The names and addresses were obtained through a Freedom of Information Law request. The information only indicates whether residents are legally allowed to own handguns—not if they actually have them. Residents were upset to find their information was made public without any notification. One commenter suggested that instead of displaying information about the possible location of legal weapons, the paper should find out where illegal guns are kept. But Royle said that residents have a right to access this information. “Our readers are understandably interested to know about guns in their neighborhoods,” she said in the statement.