The New York-based newspaper that published the names and addresses of handgun permit holders residing in several counties surrounding the city has hired armed guards to protect its staff following an onslaught of angry calls and emails from gun owners.
The Journal News has hired armed security personnel from “RGA Investigations and that they are manning the newspaper’s Rockland County headquarters at 1 Crosfield Ave., West Nyack, through at least tomorrow, Wednesday, January 2, 2013,” the Rockland Country Times reported, the chief rival publication of TJN.
According to several police reports, the editor of the embattled publication, Caryn A. McBride, complained about a high volume of “negative correspondences,” and filed an incident report over one email writer who wondered “what McBride would get in her mail now.”
After looking into the matter, police said the email “did not constitute an offense” and did not contain a real threat.
It stands to reason that those who work for TJN should not be surprised by the amount of ‘feedback’ they’re receiving from the gun community.
As Guns.com previously reported, several pro-gun bloggers took it upon themselves to retaliate against the pro-gun control paper in a matter that seemed most fitting. That is, they created interactive maps containing the names, addresses, and phone numbers of TJN’s staff, making their info easily accessible to those who want to express dissatisfaction.
“Somehow, [TJN was] conflating legal gun owners with some crazed, tormented devil up in Newtown and putting the two together. And I was offended by that and I wondered how they’d like it if their addresses were published,” said attorney and blogger Christopher Fountain, who published TJN staff info on his blog, in a CNN interview.
Of course, this whole situation could have been avoided if TJN had issued a public apology and shut down their interactive maps showcasing permit holder information.
But that’s not what they’re doing.
Instead, executives at the paper are doubling down on their cause to expose gun owners and are now trying to solicit permit holder information from Putnam County officials (they’ve already published Westchester and Rockland counties).
Thankfully, so far, county officials have refused to comply with the paper’s request, even though the information can be made public under the Freedom of Information Act.
So, to recap, TJN publishes names of handgun owners in the interest of ‘public safety,’ pro-gun community fights back and publishes names of TJN staff, feeling exposed and fearing that they now may be in danger, TJN staff hires armed guards (gun owners) to provide protection so that TJN can continue to publish the names and addresses of more gun owners.
In other words, TJN seems to believe, as Dylan Skriloff, the Rockland County Times’ associate publisher & editor-in-chief wrote, “Guns are good for the goose but NOT for the gander.”
At least one lawmaker is stepping up to the plate to try and put an end to this madness. Sen. Greg Ball (R-NY) is crafting legislation that would keep gun owner information private except to law enforcement.
“The asinine editors at the Journal News have once again gone out of their way to place a virtual scarlet letter on law abiding firearm owners throughout the region,” his website states.
Hopefully, Sen. Ball’s bill gains traction.
In the meantime, one can’t help but to wonder about the security firm involved here. It seems as though they are willing to protect TJN despite the fact that TJN wouldn’t think twice about publishing the names and addresses of the security firm’s employees (if TJN hasn’t already). Sure, money is good, but what about standing on principle and looking out for one’s employees?
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