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NY County defies law and refuses to release gun permit information for controversial Google Map. What do you think: right or wrong decision? - http://tcrn.ch/UGNZNv
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Aaron Hemmelgarn's profile photoJ Garcia's profile photoElma Placeres Dieppa's profile photoErich Gebhard's profile photo
38 comments
 
Why not plot all license plate numbers to their addresses on a map and see what good comes out of that? Oh, and while we are at it we can add a search engine to it too. That way all the crooks and road ragers can find exactly what they want. This map is an irresponsible misuse of public information. 
 
If Google wants the information, they can send out questionnaires or go door to door. Forcing private information is a breach of trust and may be considered unethical.
 
Releasing the information to the public simply amounts to a good way for criminals to know who is disarmed in the area.  Since that's pretty horrible, I'm glad they won't share that information.  I wish my own county would have done the same.  Too late for that now.  I suppose most people who do not have permits will be forced now to go run out and get them, in order to be protected from the criminals that now have the "Disarmed Citizens" list from the Journal News.  Good job, Journal News.  I hope you all get a nice big class action lawsuit from all the people who are robbed in their homes from now on.  As you can tell, I think it's utterly vile what they've done.
 
I think those permits are processed using tax payers money. Dumb. The public will get their rightful information in the end. Your 2nd amendment doesn't trump every other right. You want to own a gun, fine. I want to know were potential mass murderers are located, just like sexual predators.
 
Ok, +David Farris , since you now know where all of the potential mass murderers are located, what exactly do you plan to do with that information?  
 
Wait a sec. +David Farris knows where all potential mass murderers are just by knowing where gun owners are?  Wow. No one ever buys a gun illegally I guess and no one kills anyone from another country, right? Oh wait, if you use September 11th 2001 as a reference, should we also know the private residences of all licensed pilots, in the world?
 
I'm pretty sure that the only practical beneficiaries of this Google map of legal gun permit owners is criminals.  No one else has even a theoretical benefit.  
 
... still looking to hear back from David what he plans to do exactly with this all of this gun permit information... so far ... crickets ... hmmmm ... I still can not imagine a single practical use ... other than for the criminals, of course.  Well, David?  Care to give us any example of how you plan to use the information?  Inquiring minds would like to know.
 
It's just like a property ownership record, which is a publicly available record. I don't agree with publishing a Google Map with the location of every registered gun owner because it is in poor taste, but it's not a violation of anyone's privacy when the records are public information. Just like your property (home, car, etc.) ownership records. 
 
My objection is not that it's a violation of privacy.  My objection is that the Journal News had no business publishing this map, and the only reason they did it, apparently, was to be pricks to legal gun owners, as if to say "look we can out you to the entire public, snicker, snicker, ha ha".  That's not only in bad taste, but as everyone has noted since then, it also provides every criminal with a browser an easy way to find out what houses to avoid during home break-ins.  So bad taste aside, it was bone-headed stupid.  Arguing that "the public has the right to know" is just the most asinine icing on the cake.  The person responsible for this decision really should resign.  And I'd be happy if a class action lawsuit on behalf of burglarized residents of the area were leveled against the Journal News, to teach others this very simple life lesson:  Not everything that can be done should be done.  This was one of those.
 
Way wrong for lots of reasons! !! Please use common sense. Please!
 
I'm not as concerned with this making it easier pickings in terms of the houses without a gun. Dogs and security systems are proven deterrents also. I'm more concerned with criminals targeting those homes EXACTLY because they HAVE a gun. Since there's been so much chatter about how gun owners aren't locking their weapons as well as they could, publishing that list might help to put more illegal (as in legally purchased and later stolen) guns on the streets.
 
A plumber, the A/C man, the real estate agent, etc, etc, all have to have a license, and they are all of public record.  So why not do the same for licensed gun owners?  Why are they more special than tradesmen and professionals?  So, sure, I would like to know if my wino neighbor owns a gun.
 
I don't recall that the purchase of a weapon negates one's right to privacy. How'd we react to the content of our medicine cabinets being outed??? Or our purchases of ... 'marital aids'? We have a right to utilize and to buy... in the privacy of our own homes.
In addition-- it also labels where a robbery could be lucrative for the thieves. Dangerous, maybe-- but weapons make fast, dependable money on the black market.
 
I know where criminals won't be going.

Anybody living outside of those areas should do the smart thing and get trained, licensed and buy a gun immediately!
 
+Mike Cosmi what is your reference for home invasions increasing in England post legislation? Also the general population welcomed the changes so it wasn't viewed as "tyrannical".

 
Am I in a political site or gplus account here????
 
+Mike Cosmi, I lived in the UK through the period you're talking about. Sorry, but your assertion is utter nonsense. Only handguns and semi-automatics were outlawed after the Dunblane school massacre and Hungerford shootings. Shotguns are still fairly widely owned in rural areas. Several of my friends and family use them to shoot game.

But there was never widespread ownership of firearms in the UK, and never a 'gun culture' nor frequent use of guns to protect against 'home invasion'. Burglary rates correlate more to economic cycles than anything else, and they've declined in recent years. And I remember very wide agreement across British society that outlawing most guns was a good thing. Again, what's your source for calling bullshit?

Please don't assume the very unique american gun culture is shared by any other country in the world. It really isn't.
 
+Mike Cosmi Please don't resort to insults. Crime peaked in the mid 1990`s and has been declining since, it might not suit your agenda but less guns in a society = less gun crime. To be fair to you if that WSJ article is indicative of US press then no wonder you are so misguided. Like you say, Google it.
 
I'm afraid you're trying to reason with gun culture. Good luck, they just want guns and could care less about anything else. Sad
 
Despite the law, respecting personal privacy is always the right thing to do, particularly when you know the information will be abused. This is an unfortunate instance where the people doing wrong have the law on their side. For what it's worth, punishing people for obeying the law encourages civil disobedience in the future.
 
+David Farris , typically permit fees support the process, although I don't know how it works in New York state.

Should we likewise publish income tax returns? Those are government information as well. Before publishing personal this information, we really need to ask what public good it serves.
M Rod
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I feel this is wrong, no one should know if I have a gun in my home or not. It is my personal business...  
 
I'm in favor of making the location of guns public knowledge. It probably is right now, but isn't easily accessible by the public. This is probably because of red tape and/or ignorance of how to obtain it. It should be easy peasy for anybody wishing to know it. This effort should be funded by gun permit fees. Hey, smokers have rights, but their rights are not allowed to encroach upon others rights like they once were. Gun owners; don't be afraid of the light. Come out of the darkness. I don't necessarily want to take your guns, but I do want to control gun peripherals; such as ammunition, clips, sights, etc. The 2nd amendment doesn't guarantee you the peripherals, just the guns...for now.
 
+Bob Cloninger , I agree with does the public need to know? Tax returns: no. Gun permits: yes. Divorce decree: I don't think so, but it is public record. I find this to be more personal than a gun permit, but less so than tax records.
 
+Stanton Taylor, so if gun permits should be public information, is there a need to publish the information? If so, what is that need? My position is that personal privacy is a right, and violations of privacy require justification based on a specific, articulated need. 
 
+Bob Cloninger I agree that privacy is a right but the problem that gun owners face is that a gun permit is a public record. Unless they can change the law, these records are available to anyone who wants to see them. I would not be surprised if the NRA starts lobbying to put in place some sort of restriction on who can access these records.
 
The journal should not have published this information cause it stirs up controversy. That being said the names and addresses of the affected gun owners is no longer their private information. They signed it away to the public domain when they registered their permits. The map is not a violation of privacy because the information in question is already out there. As far as privacy goes, what difference does it make if they publish the map?? Legislation has determined it is the right of the people to know who gun permit holders are and where they live. If you are like me, and disagree with this get out and vote, but don't sit there and complain that information you signed away yourself is being used. The real enemy here is not the journal but rather, it is the law that places this information in public domain.
 
+Tom Boyd, the information, while held by the state, is short of public domain since law prohibits releasing the data for commercial use. That exclusion is moot once the information is published, of course, so it still comes back to "Juts because you can, doesn't mean you should". This is just a puzzling attempt to bully citizens.
 
+Nate Wright Well the kid that shot off the faces of chidren did. So yeah that's a good start. Your dumb point?
 
I don't see why owning a gun means you should be condemned in this way. The way I see it, this map only serves as a useful guide for hiding places in the event of a zombie apocalypse.
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