It was inevitable that the Journal News‘ irresponsible act of publishing a searchable mapped database of registered gun owners in metropolitan New York would lead to targeted crime. What wasn’t certain was if the crimes would involve burglars looking for handguns or residents who are not registered gun-owners robbed by armed assailants.
Maybe both will happen due to the Journal News‘ supposed act of journalistic bravado. But the first plausible connection to the searchable database is the case of a burglary victim in White Plains, New York.
Newsday published a story that a law-abiding gun owner’s home was burglarized after his address was pinpointed on the Journal News‘ public searchable database. The targeted item? The owner’s gun, which was locked in a gun safe.
A White Plains residence pinpointed on a controversial handgun permit database was burglarized Saturday, and the burglars’ target was the homeowner’s gun safe.
At least two burglars broke into a home on Davis Avenue at 9:30 p.m. Saturday but were unsuccessful in an attempt to open the safe, which contained legally owned weapons, according to a law enforcement source. One suspect was taken into custody, the source said.
Does that make the Journal News an accessory to crime? The question is rhetorical, since nearly everyone in the reporting business values First Amendment free speech rights (just like gun owners value Second Amendment rights). Yet it should make writers pause when they are putting out sensitive public information like gun ownership about unknowing citizens, who don’t have armed guards like the Journal News‘ writers or Hollywood celebrities do.
Gawker doubled down on the Journal News‘ stupidity by publishing a searchable database of New York City’s registered gun owners. But why should radical left-wing activists care about what damage they do to ordinary citizens? Isn’t their worldview mainly about avoiding personal responsibility, and that it’s society or even inanimate objects’ fault?