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Monday, February 25, 2013

Newspaper Apologizes for Filing Gun-Related Information Request

Posted by on Mon, Feb 25, 2013 at 5:03 PM

Jim Romenesko writes:

The Cherokee Scout in Murphy N.C. apologized Friday for asking the local sheriff for the names of gun-permit holders and permit applicants. The paper calls its records request “a tremendous error in judgment” and apologizes to the sheriff for submitting it.

We never meant to offend the wonderful people of this fine community,” says publisher David Brown.

The whole apology—go to Romenesko to read it in full—reads like it was written at gunpoint. Which, you know, it kind of was.

 

Comments (18) RSS

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22
National social media controversy erupted when the Sheriff’s posted the Scout’s request on his county funded facebook page. Major national groups that specialize in this type of social media coverage, for their corporate gain, enjoy spreading all our remarks across the county, thereby increasing their attraction to publicity and profits at the expense of Cherokee County.

Many potential visitors and investors including possible new industry will be turned off by this controversy .

Now, one important consideration is that North Carolina is only one of ten states that provides access to public records pertaining to gun registration. There is in the NC Legislative committee currently a bill to restrict public access to these lists.

However, until the NC law is changed, Sheriff Keith Lovin has the responsibility to uphold and enforce legally existing laws, not just laws he agrees with. To be truly effective he must understand the integrity needed to do the job in a legal and responsible manner and uphold the public trust placed in him.

Every citizen of the United States has a right to ask Sheriff Lovin for the gun permit registration list. Not restricted to any one group or organization.

The United States of America is the greatest nation on earth. Every citizen has the right to access public records as provided by state and federal laws and the right to freedom of opinion and expression publicly without fear of censorship or punishment. I am proud to have served in our Armed Forces in the Korean War, Vietnam War and Desert Storm to protect freedom and democracy of our great nation and around the world.
Posted by standtall6 on March 2, 2013 at 12:01 PM · Report this
Big Sven 21
I'm sure attempting to publically shame gun owners will *totally* get them over to your side.

All these "gun owners should be happy to have their names published" arguments are disingenuous and not worthy of the Slog.
Posted by Big Sven http://onedatapoint.blogspot.com/ on February 26, 2013 at 6:07 AM · Report this
Tacoma Traveler 20
7,

Godwin!

How cliche can you get? Does everything you dislike really compare to the Holocaust? Someone stepped on my show-they're gestapo! That guy just cut me off in traffic! What's next, Auschwitz?

It doesn't compare in the slightest to the horror endured by gay men and Jews in WW2. Nobody's shoving you into an oven. You are not in a concentration camp or a ghetto. You are not being made to walk in the gutter rather than on a sidewalk. Nobody is raping you.

This hyperbolic tendency to conflate any minor thing we dislike to equivalency with the Holocaust is an insult to everyone who really did suffer the Holocaust. Becaiuse what you are saying is "Hey Jews! You know that whole destruction of your entire family? That was just like having someone do a public records request at the county clerk's office. That's all it was!" or "Hey gay dudes! You know what your rape at the hands of concentration camp guards while you were being worked and starved to death? That was the same thing as somebody cutting me off in traffic!"

If I were a Holocaust survivor, I would slap the shit out of anybody that minimized the Holocaust in this way. How dare you insult the dead this way? How dare you minimize the grief of those few who can still remember what that time was like?
Posted by Tacoma Traveler on February 26, 2013 at 4:27 AM · Report this
19
"While Horne was on the phone with the sheriff, he also thanked him and his staff for their quick response when some people who saw Facebook posts started making personal threats against him."

At gunpoint indeed.
Posted by Tag on February 26, 2013 at 2:54 AM · Report this
I Fucked Your Dad 18
It's NC. Those people are crazy by definition.
Posted by I Fucked Your Dad on February 26, 2013 at 1:59 AM · Report this
Pridge Wessea 16
15 - The two scenarios are not even remotely similar.
Posted by Pridge Wessea on February 25, 2013 at 11:09 PM · Report this
GeneStoner 15
Its kinda hard to carry concealed, when the paper blows your cover. The paper did the responsible thing by backing down.

Nobody should know you are packing, until its too late for the BG...

If you disagree, how would you like the names of all women who had a Constitutionally-legal abortion put out by a fishwrap? Same shit, really distasteful.
Posted by GeneStoner on February 25, 2013 at 10:57 PM · Report this
14
I don't have a problem with publishing the registered addresses of gun permit holders, as long as they also publish the home addresses of everyone at the paper, including the writer of the piece.

You know, because nobody here has violated the law and its 'news.'

Go for it.
Posted by CPN on February 25, 2013 at 9:41 PM · Report this
13
@7 This is a totally testable hypothesis. Gun ownership maps have been published before. If the act of doing so had any bearing on crime rates (either increased burglary of homes without weapons or increased attempted firearm thefts) it would be a fairly simple problem of comparing before and after home invasion/burglary rates in the areas (and specific gun-ownership homes) with the published data and then comparing the published areas with neighboring areas.
Posted by Valpey on February 25, 2013 at 7:22 PM · Report this
Pridge Wessea 12
@7 - Slippery slope is slippery. Next thing you know, all gun nuts will be turned into soylent green and fed to circus bears. (See, I can do it too!)
Posted by Pridge Wessea on February 25, 2013 at 7:12 PM · Report this
10
Wait a minute if owning a gun shows your a true patriot, ready to over throw the government, and vital as evidence that you can protect yourself, shouldn't the anti-control folks be thrilled to have it publicly known that they own a gun?
Posted by Machiavelli was framed on February 25, 2013 at 6:55 PM · Report this
Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn 9
@7

Wait. Owning a gun makes you a target for robbery? Only if criminals expect to find guns lying around not in a safe, maybe. And we know hardly anybody keeps guns that way, right?

I thought people had guns to protect their homes. That robbers feared armed residents. Which would mean criminals would target the gun grabbing liberals who are not listed as gun owners. Which would only prove that guns are awesome. Sounds like a win-win for gun loving America.

Posted by Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn http://youtu.be/zu-akdyxpUc on February 25, 2013 at 6:54 PM · Report this
8
@7. I thought guns in the home deterred robberies.
Posted by deign_to_say on February 25, 2013 at 6:52 PM · Report this
OutInBumF 6
HOW DARE THEY EVEN ASK?!?! say the gun nuts. HOW DARE THEY?!
Posted by OutInBumF on February 25, 2013 at 6:09 PM · Report this
Knat 5
*the sheriff's office can refuse it... it's not like the newspaper harmed anyone...
Posted by Knat on February 25, 2013 at 5:58 PM · Report this
Knat 4
Why is even requesting it a "tremendous error in judgement"? They can refuse it as they did, and it's not like they've harmed anyone to put in the request, and to even imply that anyone could be offended at such a request is ludicrous.

Does anyone on Slog care to try to make sense of this? I just can't.
Posted by Knat on February 25, 2013 at 5:57 PM · Report this
Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn 3
My God. I hope I never offend a gun enthusiast. I can only imagine how that must feel.
Posted by Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn http://youtu.be/zu-akdyxpUc on February 25, 2013 at 5:57 PM · Report this
1
All editors who file public info requests about gun-permit holders should be required to undergo two trans-vaginal ultrasounds before the request is honored. If the editor doesn't have a vagina, one will have to be installed.
Posted by Dan Savage on February 25, 2013 at 5:33 PM · Report this

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