The Journal News Pulls Interactive Map of NY Gun Owners

 

“New York newspaper removed an interactive map from its website following a public outcry over the revealing of names and addresses of handgun permit holders in Westchester and Rockland counties,” cnn.com reports. In an open letter on the publication’s website, Publisher Janet Hasson [above] was far from conciliatory. “Our decision to do so is not a concession to critics that no value was served by the posting of the map in the first place.” Hasson asserts that she pulled the plug because the paper had made its point (and besides the legislature’s about to ban the practice). “We will keep a snapshot of our map — with all its red dots — on our website to remind the community that guns are a fact of life we should never forget.” Let’s hope that’s always the case. Make the jump for the letter published at lohud.com.

To our readers:

In the wake of the Sandy Hook shootings, The Journal News thought the community should know where gun permit holders in their community were, in part to give parents an opportunity make careful decisions about their children’s safety.

The Journal News mapped the public database of permit holders, placing a dot on the address of every permit holder in Westchester and Rockland counties and providing the name and street address of each holder. The dots conveyed a powerful message: gun permit holders are everywhere in our counties.

But public reaction to the posting of names and street addresses was swift and divided. Many in the community expressed their gratitude for The Journal News’ decision to make the information available, but permit holders were outraged at what they considered to be an invasion of privacy. Gun owners from across the country vocally conveyed their anger and accused The Journal News of having exposed permit holders and non-permit holders alike to the risk of burglaries and other crimes. Hundreds of threats were made to Journal News staffers.

So intense was the opposition to our publication of the names and addresses that legislation passed earlier this week in Albany included a provision allowing permit holders to request confidentiality and imposing a 120-day moratorium on the release of permit holder data.

Today The Journal News has removed the permit data from lohud.com. Our decision to do so is not a concession to critics that no value was served by the posting of the map in the first place. On the contrary, we’ve heard from too many grateful community members to consider our decision to post information contained in the public record to have been a mistake. Nor is our decision made because we were intimidated by those who threatened the safety of our staffers. We know our business is a controversial one, and we do not cower.

But the database has been public for 27 days and we believe those who wanted to view it have done so already. As well, with the passage of time, the data will become outdated and inaccurate.

Equally important, the legislature has weighed in on the issue and representatives of residents from across the state have said that some New Yorkers who hold gun permits should have the right to keep that information private. As a news organization, we are constantly defending the public’s right to know. Consequently we do not endorse the way the legislature has chosen to limit public access to gun permit data. The statute is very broad and allows anyone who meets certain criteria within qualifying categories to keep their permit information private. When the moratorium concludes, far fewer permit holders will be identifiable, and those who want to know which houses on their block may have guns will not be able to get that information. But we are not deaf to voices who have said that new rules should be set for gun permit data.

Make no mistake, The Journal News will continue to report aggressively on gun ownership. We will continue to pursue our request for data from Putnam County, and will closely analyze the data for Westchester and Rockland counties when it once again becomes publicly available. And we will keep a snapshot of our map — with all its red dots — on our website to remind the community that guns are a fact of life we should never forget.

Sincerely,

Janet Hasson

President and Publisher

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About Robert Farago

Robert Farago is the Publisher of The Truth About Guns (TTAG). He started the site to explore the ethics, morality, business, politics, culture, technology, practice, strategy, dangers and fun of guns.

69 Responses to The Journal News Pulls Interactive Map of NY Gun Owners

  1. avatarMatt in FL says:

    9 comments under her letter so far. Zero are complimentary of the newspaper, its decision to publish the addresses, or its stated reason for de-publishing them.

  2. avatarDamocles says:

    What an arrogant cow.

  3. avatarWilliam says:

    Guess she didn’t like Project Veritas pointing out her hypocrisy.

  4. avatarPyrotek85 says:

    “We will keep a snapshot of our map — with all its red dots — on our website to remind the community that guns are a fact of life we should never forget.”

    Couldn’t they have done that in the first place to illustrate their supposed point without giving out everyone’s names and addresses?

  5. avatarjwm says:

    Yes, guns are a fact of life in America. It may have been possible to alter that back in 1900 or so. But that ship has sailed. 300+ million guns, hundreds of millions of mags, and billions of rounds in private hands. No legal or ethical way to confiscate these guns short of the government declaring war on it’s citizens.

    And the abti’s want to protect our schools by closing gun show loopholes. The anti’s are so clueless that they argue against putting vetted people in the schools with guns to protect the kids. Pathetic.

  6. avatarg says:

    Wow… what a jerk and a non-apology of the letter.

    She thinks gun owners are a threat to society? I think the evidence is pretty clear that a muck-raking wannabe “journalist” like herself and everyone on her staff that agreed with her are the real threats to the privacy and liberty of law-abiding citizens. She contributed NOTHING of value to the debate over guns and safety in this country; instead she endangered the lives of innocent people. Putting up “interactive maps” was a blatant attempt to castigate gun owners in the same way police departments publish maps of registered sex offenders.

    Funny how even without the interactive map, they’re still keeping up a snapshot as if to stick a middle finger in the eye of the public at large.

    • avatarSoccerchainsaw says:

      This struck me as similar to how a little dog safe behind a fence will bark and yap at a huge dog on the other side, assured that they can get in the last word in the safety of their backyard.

  7. avatarJohn Fritz says:

    The smug oozes out of her like puss.

  8. avatarSkeev says:

    She’s a coward if she doesn’t stand by the map that she defends.

  9. avatarWC says:

    If that was my county, I might check if the homes of my kids’ friends were on the list. If so, I’d bring up the topic with the parent, just to make sure the guns were stored safely. One poster on TTAG stated he kept loaded guns “everywhere” including under the couch cushion. That would be a home where I would not allow my kids to play.

    • avatarBeninMA says:

      Why do you need a map to ask that question? It might be an awkward conversation, but it would be more awkward if they knew you had first looked them up on “The Map.”

      • avatarWC says:

        It would give me an idea of which families I needed to have “that talk” with. Yes, I’m not sure exactly how I’d work that into the conversation, and there is a possiblity of awkward moments, but that happens sometimes. One mom who’s kids come play at my house, and my kids play at her house has forbidden tree climbing (we have a tree fort about 4 feet off the ground), but got her kids a used trampoline missing the net. We have different ideas of what is safe, but we work through it.

        • avatarBeninMA says:

          No, I understand. I think it’s a perfectly reasonable thing to ask about (probably a lot of people ask this, right along with “do you keep your liquor locked up?”). My point was that you don’t need a map to ask (and you should probably be asking everyone anyway — the map isn’t exactly accurate). And I’d rather ask it as a standard “safe practices” question, rather than reveal that I’ve been doing computer background checks on them. Ultimately, a trusting and open communication is what will tell you if this is a safe house, not government records.

    • avatarlp3056 says:

      If you are going to have your kid play in the home of an adult who apparently doesn’t have kids, then I don’t know what to say.

      In addition I would hope you have trained your kid(s) on safe handling (or no handling) of fire arms.

      The above I wrote is not meant as a direct attack on you, though it looks like it. ;^)

      • avatarWC says:

        1) The poster with “loaded guns everywhere, including under the couch cushion” said he had kids.(!)
        2) My oldest kid has shot a rifle, and therefore knows basic gun safety rules. Adults who ignore those basic safety rules are not ones whom I choose to have around my kids.

        • avatarBill says:

          Why are you so worried about this now? Have you bought into the antis line of BS? I grew up with guns all over our home and most of my friends parents also had guns . Not a single household had safes or trigger locks. We never thought to touch one without supervision. We were taught the 4 rules beginning around age 4 and had them hammered in for the rest of our childhood. Not a single ND or accident. What has changed other than the now constant bleat that guns are evil and dangerous.

        • avatarWC says:

          My youngest is 3, and sometimes goes on playdates with his older siblings. I’m pretty sure he would not be able to tell a real gun from the nerf or bubble guns he plays with at home.

  10. avatarJoke & Dagger says:

    Talk about needing to lose 50 pounds.

    • avatarSoccerchainsaw says:

      Not to pick on Joke here but there are here and on many other stories negative comments on the relatively superficial features of the person with whom we disagree. If we want to continue to be thought of as the “armed intelligencia” it seems to me that we should try to keep our comments on a higher plane and destroy their “logic”. The next time I am tempted to comment on someone’s resemblance to a farm animal or question their parental lineage I will stop, walk away from the computer, and come back later in a calmer, more intelligent state of mind. I encourage all to do the same. We don’t need to give our enemies ammunition. Thanks for your consideration.

  11. avatarDebra Ward says:

    Name ..address and phone number of newspaper publisher who put the map of gun owners out there and violated their privacy. (Janet Hasson, 3 Gate House Lane, Mamaroneck NY 10543 (248) 594-2197).

    • avatarA. B. says:

      Oh, look at that, right in the midst of the Upper Crust Power Elite and their paid — and ARMED — private security patrols.
      How very hypocritical of her.

  12. avatarMotoJB says:

    These idiots should be prosecuted for publishing that…morons.

  13. avatarDaniel Silverman says:

    Not a concession, not a concession my @ss!!!
    They couldn’t sleep, had to turn off their phones, hire armed guards… Yeah ok, I believe you.. Here is some beach front Property in Phoenix I am going to sell you too!

  14. avatarAharon says:

    Thanks for posting the video. They can dish it but won’t stand up for their beliefs.

    Where did the video go???? Seriously ya’ all there was a video here somewhere.

  15. avatarAharon says:

    If Janet Hasson gets tarred and feathered by local residents it would be an improvement to her looks. Hasson claims that her employees have received hundreds of threats. Did the police act on any of those perceived so-called threats or agree they had received threats? I’m guessing not otherwise it would have been loudly announced by her little rag and the mass media.

  16. avatarWellington says:

    From the original version of her letter:

    On the contrary, we’ve heard from too many grateful community members and prison inmates in Westchester and Rockland counties …

    … We know our business is a controversial one, and we do not cower. We stand proud and erect behind the armed security guards at The Journal News offices.

  17. avatarIn Memphis says:

    “… we are constantly defending the public’s right to know.”

    Who the #v@% said I wanted to know!? Unless your a pedophile or drug dealer I dont give a &#!4 what you do behind closed doors on your property. If I had kids it would be MY responsiblity to keep them safe, not a damn newspaper.

  18. avatarSilver says:

    Read: they caved to public pressure.

    You “made your point” huh? What point exactly? That you’re irresponsible, immoral fascists who give one pause as to the value of humanity as a whole?

    Typical progressive fascist, so cowardly they can’t even stand by the evil they purport. I hope a burglar visits her gun-free home and leaves no survivors.

  19. avatarRandy Drescher says:

    OMG, Joe’s got a pistola 3 houses down! Alert the fbi,cia,homeland security, hell.. call cheney he knows how to handle firearms. Theres got to be a support group for people with a fear of firearms, besides the brady bunch that is, Randy

  20. avatarSGC says:

    I’m thinking of a four letter word…rhymes with PUNT…and has nothing to do with football…

  21. avatarSmaj says:

    What a reprehensible swine. My apologies to swine everywhere.

  22. avatarLars says:

    Apology not accepted. Somebody needs to make an example out of her.

  23. avatarAaronW says:

    I have to at least give them credit for one thing: in their Letters section, they’ve been posting criticism of their decision to make that map pretty much every day for the last several days…

  24. avatardirk diggler says:

    Don’t let the reporter Dwayne off the hook. I have called and talked to him a few times and plan to continue our late evening discussions. Granted it is hard for a friendship to develop thru a series of brief conversations, but I am hopeful our personal relationship will evolve to at least continue a call past the one minute mark.

  25. avatarAaronW says:

    One of the guys at our Range in Westchester recently died (natural causes). He was a popular fellow, so pretty much everyone including the Range Manager was set to go to the services (funeral home, church, interment).
    That meant no one to open up in the morning. So we’re trying to write up a sign that mentioned that there was an unusual situation that required temporary closure, without any alarming language about anyone dying. We agreed that any verbiage that made it look as if there might have been a gun related accident would be Journal News fodder, since the sign would be easily visible from the road, a very busy thoroughfare.
    To get past this fit of writer’s block, one of the guys offered to go to just the 8:30am service, then open the Range gates right on time, no shooting allowed until the Range Manager arrived.
    So yeah, that’s the sort of stuff we have to deal with where I’m from.

  26. avatarAnonymous says:

    > The Journal News thought the community should know where
    > gun permit holders in their community were, in part to give
    > parents an opportunity make careful decisions about their
    > children’s safety.

    Members of a certain demographic group — let’s just call them “the urban youth” — are responsible for a disproportionate amount of violent crime, including homicide. In fact, they commit violent crime and homcide at a much higher per capita rate than gun owners do. If you were to pick a member of this demographic and a gun owner at random, the member of this demographic is much more likely to be a criminal.

    When will newspapers publish the names and addresses of members of this demographic group, “to give parents an opportunity to make careful decisions about their children’s safety”?

    • avatarAaronW says:

      One of the talking heads on Westchester News12 said, “I used that map, and I crossed all of those addresses off – houses we’ll skip next trick or treating on Halloween.”

  27. avatarTRUTHY says:

    She looks like DiFi’s lesbo twin…..

  28. avatarJoseph says:

    As we’ve noted before, Ron White is right, “You can’t fix stupid.” Not even with duct tape.

  29. avataruncommon_sense says:

    “We will keep a snapshot of our map — with all its red dots — on our website to remind the community that guns are a fact of life we should never forget.”

    And so are violent attacks from both criminals and governments. Why isn’t that newspaper publishing an interactive map showing the location of all past and present violent crimes?

  30. avatarduke nukem says:

    …. and now she has to be escorted by bodyguards all the time which are ARMED… oh! the irony!

  31. avatarkb says:

    “Nor is our decision made because we were intimidated by those who threatened the safety of our staffers. We know our business is a controversial one, and we do not cower.”

    But we WILL hire 24/7 armed security.

    The hypocrisy is so intensely overwhelming, it’s like talking to someone with such bad breath that it is embedded in your nostrils after you part ways.

    • avatarSoccerchainsaw says:

      If I lived in the area, I’d casually walk by their office wearing an NRA hat and an empty holster, briefly stop and take a picture, then just as casually walk away. Then I’d do it again the next day. Rinse. Repeat.

  32. avatarChuckN says:

    I’m sure this has nothing to do with the last
    two burglaries of listed residences where
    criminals specifically sought out firearms.
    Absolutely nothing. Nothing at all.

  33. avatarWilliam says:

    Good thing no criminals downloaded a copy, or saved the issue, eh?

  34. avatarMilsurp Collector says:

    The basic vibe I got from this article was:

    “We’re sorry, but we’re actually not, so we’ll continue our quest to post more of these maps even if innocent people are burglarized, raped or, killed as a result. It’s worth it to us because guns and their owners are evil. It’s also for the children.”

    The sheer arrogance and hypocritical stupidity of this letter knows no bounds.

  35. avataruncommon_sense says:

    Gun grabbers are always shouting that armed citizens are seething cauldrons of rage that will erupt at the slightest provocation. If this gal honestly believed that, why would she publish the names and addresses of thousands of armed citizens? Surely she had to expect that her actions would seriously irritate several of them … and that they would erupt in violence.

    The fact that she went ahead and published the map demonstrates that she is, in fact, not afraid of armed citizens and trusts them to be law abiding. That seriously undermines a primary argument that gun grabbers use to disarm citizens.

    • avatarDamocles says:

      And after a few cranky phone calls, they had the unmitigated gall to hire armed guards. Piece of crap hypocrites. The Project Veritas videos ‘splains it in all it’s disgusting glory. Hey, I’m not perfect, but I do try to do right by people, and I am thankful that my God is just.

  36. avatarRalph says:

    Dear Janet

    ES&D you ugly f^cking cow.

    Angry letter to follow.

    Regards,

    Ralph

  37. avatarGreg Camp says:

    The public has a right to know what public officials are doing because they are acting in our names and with our money. My private information doesn’t come under that sunshine.

  38. avatarDave says:

    The Journal News is a High School level rag. This was a cheap publicity stunt.

  39. avatarA. B. says:

    If they are so very concerned with the safety and well-being of children, why are they not also publishing the addresses of every Catholic priest in NY? Or the addresses of every child abuser, child molester, or known gang-banger? Or is that information somehow more private than the addresses of legal and law-abiding gun-owners?
    I am a “liberal”, and I am disgusted by what this idiot paper publisher has done.

  40. avatarpat says:

    Crazy, stupid, commie bitch.

  41. avatarBrad says:

    I think it’s safe to say this backfired on them. You have to scroll through several pages on the comments before you find someone in support of her. They may have upped their viewership for a brief time but at the cost of their journalistic integrity (oxymoron, I know). Now as they fade into obscurity, they’ll have to deal with the actual cost. Reduced subscriptions and outright boycotting. Wouldn’t be surprised if there were some management changes in a few months. Well see.

  42. avatarAJ says:

    “As well, with the passage of time, the data will become outdated and inaccurate.”

    She completely ignores the fact that the registrar TOLD them at least 25% of hte info was outdated and innacurate.

    “The Journal News mapped the public database of permit holders, placing a dot on the address of every permit holder in Westchester and Rockland counties and providing the name and street address of each holder. ”

    Every permit holder, except those who worked for the paper, that is.

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