A California newspaper asked for Sutter Co. concealed gun permits. Then the threats rolled in

A California newspaper asked for Sutter Co. concealed gun permits. Then the threats rolled in

Gun Rights

The San Francisco Chronicle’s request to Sutter County’s sheriff may have appeared routine to a journalist used to requesting government documents. But asking for information about every concealed weapon permit holder in the conservative rural county quickly set off a cascade of threats and vitriol — after the sheriff announced on Facebook he was legally obligated to provide the names. Now, the Chronicle has been forced to increase security at its newsroom and for its reporters. Gun owners across the country are livid, fearing a newspaper in one of America’s most liberal cities wants to “dox” the state’s gun owners by releasing a list of names of people with a concealed-carry weapons permit, or CCW. “It’s a newspaper, so they are likely trying to tabulate numbers for an article about ccw. I understand the concern though, I don’t trust those bay area commies,” read one of the 862 comments on the sheriff’s Jan. 28 Facebook post , which has been shared more than 2,000 times. The Chronicle says it had no intention of publishing any such database, but will instead use the information in the aggregate to look for trends and ensure the concealed weapons system isn’t being abused. The blowback is the latest flare-up in tensions between defenders of the Second Amendment and the news institutions explicitly protected by the First Amendment. Thousands of California Public Records Act requests are filed each year by journalists, companies and private citizens, and most of them go unnoticed. This one struck […]

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