Thoughts, essays, and writings on Liberty. Written by the heirs of Patrick Henry.

“The worst thing that can happen to a good cause is not to be skillfully attacked, but to be ineptly defended.”     Frederick Bastiat

March 2, 2009

Tennesseans Upset About Gun Registrations Being Made Public

by Stephen Gordon

Here’s yet another great reason not to require firearms owners to register their weapons:

A Memphis newspaper has posted a searchable database of Tennesseans with permits to carry concealed handguns, upsetting firearm owners and igniting a debate on whether such information should be publicly available.

Gun owners say the database is an invasion of privacy and makes permit holders easy targets for burglaries. They have flooded the newspaper with complaints — some 600 e-mail messages a day — and threatened staff members and posted personal information about newspaper employees.

The newspaper, The Commercial Appeal, added the database to its Web site in December. The database did not draw attention, though, until an early February article about an argument over a parking spot that ended with a motorist shot dead.

The editor, Chris Peck, said the paper added the database because newspapers should be a thorough source for community information. Mr. Peck pointed to the recent shooting as proof of why the database is valuable to readers.

Perhaps it’s time for a database which shows how many hammers, screwdrivers, liquor bottles and Viagra prescriptions are kept at Mr. Peck’s house.

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6 Comments

  1. Okay, I agree with the overall conclusion that this is a bad development, but… “easy targets for burglaries?” Seriously? What thief is going to specifically go out of their way to target someone they know has a gun?

    Comment by Miko — March 2, 2009 @ 6:02 pm
  2. Publishing gun owners info goes both ways, bad on both ends. If the burglar is looking for an easy target who will not fight back, they target the people NOT on the list. If they are looking to make a quick buck at the gun show, they target the people on the list. Either way, it’s easier for the criminal.

    Comment by Peter — March 2, 2009 @ 6:32 pm
  3. I’m pretty sure the best thing they could do, since they already have the journalists info, is buy billboard space and ad space in the newspapers, and post their info all over Memphis. Especially in the ‘hood.

    Comment by Nick M. — March 2, 2009 @ 8:20 pm
  4. Interestingly, in the shooting they’re referring to, the shooter wasn’t even carrying his gun at the time. It was in his vehicle and he went to go retrieve it.

    So it’s quite possible that the way his firearm was stored in his truck could have been legal whether he had a concealed carry permit or not…

    (As an aside, I checked the database and he did have a permit).

    Comment by Brad Warbiany — March 2, 2009 @ 10:01 pm
  5. http://www.commercialappeal.com/feedback/

    Ask them why they’re making life easier for criminals. I’d hate to have a armed robber outside checking if I have a gun via his cell phone. Law abiding citizens concerned for their safety lose and criminals win. This is not right.

    Comment by Tom — March 2, 2009 @ 10:15 pm
  6. How did Mr. Peck manage to get his name taken off the sex offender registry list?

    Regards, Don

    Comment by Don Lloyd — March 3, 2009 @ 5:31 am

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