NY Newspaper in Firestorm Over Map of Gun Owners

Irate readers say map tells criminals which houses to rob

By Liam Carnahan,  Newser Staff

Posted Dec 26, 2012 7:40 AM CST

(Newser) – A New York newspaper has plopped itself squarely in the middle of America's gun control controversy by publishing an interactive map of homes with gun owners, reports Fox News. The Journal News in Westchester based the map on a FOIA request, and argues that some "residents would like lawmakers to expand the amount of information the public can find out about gun owners." Critics were quick to pounce, however, irate that not only did the map potentially stigmatize gun owners, but it simultaneously pointed out which homes don't have guns.

One outraged person argued that the paper had effectively published a "map for criminals to use to find homes to rob that have no guns in them to protect themselves." Another said the data equated gun owners to "sex offenders and murders" and exposed them to "anti-gun lobbyists" who will "treat them like monsters." But the Journal isn't ready to apologize yet, saying, "our readers are understandably interested to know about guns in their neighborhoods," and emphasizing that the information is public record.

Weapons handed over by their owners lay on a table during a government program that accepts gun owner's weapons in exchange for bicycles, computers, tablets or money, on Christmas Eve in the Iztapalapa...   (AP Photo/Alexandre Meneghini)
A screenshot of the map of gun owners.   (Westchester Journal News)
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