by Mark A. Cohen
The Journal News says that people who own guns live on the red dots and those who don’t are located in the blank areas on the map. Who will be more likely use that information to their advantage?
If a student punches another, how should we react? We may suggest some sort of punishment, but we wouldn’t think the bully’s hand should be amputated and we sure don’t believe in revealing where the bully lives so that everyone can harass him. Tucker Carlson, of The Daily Caller, said recently, “Who cares what kind of tool he used, why did he do it? That’s the question.” This is indeed the best response. As we know, guns are inanimate objects, but people commit murder, and the vast majority of guns used in crimes are unregistered, illegal weapons.
The frenzy to ban guns reappeared just after the Newtown, CT shooting on Sunday, Dec. 16, 2012. The Journal News, a newspaper liberally serving the area just north of New York City, decided to publish the identities of local gun owners in Westchester and Rockland counties – apparently to shame them. No one questions the legality of the action because in New York State gun ownership is public information, but was it the right thing to do? Not only did the paper name names, but it published an interactive map with their addresses. By omission, this also pointed anyone interested to the unprotected homes in each area. In 2008, candidate Barack Obama, while supporting gun rights, promised not to take our guns away, but here come the vigilantes, anyway. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and his posse have suggested they begin confiscating legally owned weapons.
The idea to embarrass gun owners backfired (pun intended), as experts and former criminals pointed out after the fact that the data makes these counties more vulnerable to robberies. There are unintended consequences, of course. Consider the battered housewife or stalked person, who legally purchased a gun for protection. If their names and addresses can be found with the click of a mouse, will they be safer? The people once arrested and / or prosecuted can now easily identify and locate the retired law enforcement professionals living in the zone (such as lawyers, judges, and police officers). Will the released information enable revenge attacks or killings? Criminals have warned that these areas will be cased in the coming months until new targets can be determined. The possibilities for gun theft increase when crazed addicts and crooks know a weapon’s location. Thieves have broken into at least one house in the area so far, probably looking for weapons to steal.
Others predict that the featured residences will be ignored and those people without permits could become victims. Some gun owners expressed elation that their addresses can now easily be identified as gun-protected: it makes them feel a whole lot safer. However, equating careful and lawful gun owners to mindless mass-murdering shooters is wrong. The newspaper should bear full responsibility for all the fallout resulting from their irresponsible, thoughtless, and senseless act. The editor (Cyndee Royle Lambert) and publisher (Janet Hasson) did not consider the consequences of their actions. In typical, elite, cowardly fashion, they pestered others with incessant questions in the past, but they themselves are answering to no one these days. Judge Jeanine Pirro, the most interesting and sensible of the TV pundits on the subject, was one of those ‘outed’ by the paper. She recently pondered if it makes as much or more sense to publish the names and addresses of the recipients of unemployment benefits – or welfare recipients - since any of them could be scamming the system and/or breaking the law. Since publishing the gun locations, The Journal News, in a fit of hypocrisy, hired armed guards to protect their location, its people, and their residences. Apparently they don’t like it when others know their home addresses.
Actors who make their living by appearing in violent movies, many of whom shoot rapid-fire weapons in those films, created an ad which asks the audience to demand a plan (for gun control). Here’s the clean version which includes interspersed shots of the same actors shooting deadly weapons while at the same time asking you for tougher gun laws. It’s okay if they make money conveying the idea of murder, but they absolve themselves of any responsibility when madmen kill for real while mimicking violent movies or TV shows. Most of those speaking on behalf of gun control laws either carry or hire people to do it for them. President Obama described the day of the Newtown shooting as “the worst day of my presidency," but his family is understandably protected by gun-carrying members of the secret service.
Listen to how so many stick up for the privacy of the common man. You’ve heard them speak. They reveal a level of paranoia second to none when it comes to how much they think they’re being watched by “the government.” Many refuse to give their phone numbers out to sales people and won’t fill out raffle forms - if their e-mail address is required. “None of their business,” they say. Most of these people fight for the right to privacy for everyone else, including those who have abortions (even those underage). But for some reason, gun owners don’t qualify for the same right to privacy - in their eyes. They’re wrong, the right to bear arms, as laid out in the Constitution’s Second Amendment, should also be protected as private.
Instead of banning guns we need to scan for potential mental illness when permits are sought and guns are bought. We need to educate people of all ages – gun owners and those who don’t have permits - about firearms and gun safety. Those who purchase and then carry a concealed weapon will seek this knowledge. As they say, more education is always better.
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Keywords: Conservatism, Conservative blog, Mark A. Cohen, From The Left to the Right, Red Eye, Andrew Cuomo, Gun Control, The Journal News, Cyndee Royle Lambert, Janet Hasson, Jeanine Pirro
Keywords: "Conservatism", "Conservative blog", "Mark A. Cohen", "From The Left to the Right", “Red Eye”, “Andrew Cuomo”, “Gun Control”, “The Journal News”, “Cyndee Royle Lambert”, “Janet Hasson”, “Jeanine Pirro”
Mark A. Cohen is currently seeking representation for his memoir, From The Left to the Right.
Mark A. Cohen is a member of and helps run the Parker Writers Group (Check out their Facebook page here)
Or, see the Parker Writers Group Web page here
Mark A. Cohen is a member of the Castle Rock Writers (Check out their Facebook page here)
Mark A. Cohen currently sits on the committee which hosted the Castle Rock Writers Conference on October 13, 2012. He is currently their Vice-Treasurer. The group, whose motto is Rock Solid Writing, is seeking their 501c3, and will convene to plan the 2013 conference soon.
Mark A. Cohen spoke for about 20 minutes at the Coffee4Conservatives meeting at the Firehouse on State Road 83, in Franktown, CO, on Oct. 21, 2012.
Mark A. Cohen spoke for about 30 minutes at the Douglas County Republicans’ First Friday Breakfast in Parker, CO, held at The War Horse Inn, on Dec. 2, 2011.
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