Bad News from Southern Oregon (Medford area)


April 25, 2008, 03:47 PM
Anyone else from this forum tthat lives in this area??


If you enjoyed reading about "Bad News from Southern Oregon (Medford area)" here in archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join today for the full version!
Henry Bowman
April 25, 2008, 03:54 PM
The newspaper does not intend to publish names on the list but requested it on principle, Editor Bob Hunter has said.We'll be watching, Bob.

Jim K
April 25, 2008, 03:58 PM
The paper won't publish the list? Nonsense. No paper will refrain from publishing anything it can get its hands on, regardless of privacy rights, individual safety, national security, or any other "impediment to freedom of the press."

(Except of course, anything that makes the paper look bad.)


April 25, 2008, 04:50 PM
This bit of business was carried in this morning's USA TODAY and applies here:

States act to shield gun holders
By Ron Barnett, USA TODAY

South Carolina last week became the latest in a growing number of states to make the names of people who have a license to carry a concealed weapon a state secret.
Five other states might not be far behind in a battle that pits a public policy of open government against the right of people to keep their gun ownership records private.
Bills that would make concealed gun permit records confidential have been introduced in eight other states this year — Alabama, Louisiana, Missouri, New York, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia — according to Janna Goodwin of the National Conference of State Legislatures.
The Tennessee bill was defeated, in a House subcommittee vote earlier this month. West Virginia's bill was tabled, and Virginia's legislative session ended before a bill could be considered, Goodwin said. Action is pending in the five other states, she said.
Concealed-weapon records always have been confidential in many states, said Colin Weaver, a spokesman for the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence. Prior to South Carolina's action, the Brady Campaign counted 26 states where the records are confidential.
The trend of states closing records intensified last year, partly in response to media outlets in Virginia, Florida and elsewhere posting those records online, said South Carolina state Rep. Michael Pitts, a Republican. "People think this one is absolutely a Second Amendment issue, but it's not," said Pitts, a former police officer who introduced his state's bill to close gun permit records. "It's as much an issue of where does the sunshine on government stop and the protection on individual privacy begin."
The degree to which these records are open or closed varies from state to state, according to an analysis done by the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press. For example:
•In Texas, the database is closed, but a person can pay a fee and find out whether a specific individual is a licensed gun owner.
•In Ohio, records are confidential but journalists may request to view the name, county of residence and date of birth of each person to whom the sheriff has issued a license to carry a concealed handgun.
Gene Policinski, vice president and executive director of the First Amendment Center, a non-partisan center at Vanderbilt University that studies free-expression issues, said he sees the move to close concealed-weapons permit records as part of a larger trend of government citing safety and security reasons for closing a variety of records.
"In general, the public seems very well served when public records are public," he said. "And I think the rationale for closing these records has more to do with political considerations regarding gun regulation than it does a necessity for secrecy or the public good of keeping public records public."
National Rifle Association spokesman Ashley Varner said that states have realized that "if they don't protect the permit holders' privacy, they can't count on the newspapers to do so."
G. Edward White, a professor of law and history at the University of Virginia, said that states that close their gun permit records could have a tough time proving the constitutionality of the action. "We're not talking about national security or the security of the state," he said. "What we're talking about is whether the disclosure of this information might somehow increase the risk that people with the weapons would be endangered, or make it more difficult for them to use them to protect themselves. I think that's a pretty weak argument."
Tennessee state Sen. Mark Norris, a Republican who introduced a bill to close his state's concealed-gun permits records, said the main concern is keeping addresses of permit holders private — particularly of women who have left abusive relationshipsand don't want the perpetrator to know where they live.
Ron McIsaac, a concealed-weapons permit holder in South Carolina who uses a wheelchair, said he doesn't like the idea of his address being made public, partly because he thinks burglars might target his home to steal guns. And he feels he needs a gun for protection because of his handicap.
"All anybody has to do now is come by and knock me off the chair, and I'm like a turtle who's been tossed over on his back," he said. "So it's important for me to have the ability to defend myself in a situation like that."
Weaver, of the Brady Campaign, said there's no evidence to show that open records put people who carry concealed weapons in greater danger.
"We feel that the greater danger is putting concealed-weapons permits in the hands of convicted felons and people that should not be allowed to have them," he said.
Mark Bilicki, a firearms instructor in Greenville, S.C., said he can understand why some people might not want their name and address published, and he tells his students not to put an NRA sticker on their vehicle because it's an advertisement for burglars.
He said that for many people, though, letting everyone know they may be carrying a gun is a point in their favor for safety.
"Quite frankly, I want everybody to know I own a gun," he said.

Barnett reports for The Greenville (S.C.) News. Contributing: Theo Emery of The (Nashville) Tennessean

April 25, 2008, 04:52 PM
For what it's worth, this topic has been oft-discussed on this forum. Here are some links to previous reports on the issue:

Henry Bowman
April 25, 2008, 05:32 PM
And to the OP: Do you have an activism call to action, or should this really be moved to General Gun Discussion?

April 25, 2008, 07:24 PM
•In Texas, the database is closed, but a person can pay a fee and find out whether a specific individual is a licensed gun owner.

Idiots... Licensed CHL permit holder maybe, but there isn't a gun reg in Texas.

April 25, 2008, 07:39 PM
scares the hell outta me... why WOULD they want it other wise, EXCEPT to print it. Where is the NRA when we need 'em.

April 28, 2008, 10:33 AM
I guess it boils down to passing laws or public propositions in order to get absolute protection. Then, have that one tied up in courts, even though that's what the people want.

I am losing faith more and more in "the system".

April 28, 2008, 12:27 PM
scares the hell outta me... why WOULD they want it other wise, EXCEPT to print it. Where is the NRA when we need 'em.
I think its possible a newspaper could seek out such a list and use it to check violent criminal stories against the list to see if they were issued carry permits. That seems fairly legitimate. As you pointed out though most don't do that. The papers description of their motives for obtaining it regard the teacher wanting a permit make it sound like they had something else in mind.

April 28, 2008, 12:36 PM
Oregon's open records laws are good in some ways, but bad in others. The legislature needs to fix this gap and exempt the list from state laws requiring public access to government documents.

April 28, 2008, 01:06 PM
From OFF (Oregon Firearms Federation):

The Medford Mail Tribune, a newspaper which has repeatedly editorialized against self defense for public employees, has won a court case .pdf to get the names, addresses and occupations of all concealed handgun license holders in Jackson County.

The newspaper demanded this information as part of series of articles attacking Medford teacher Shirley Katz. Katz, you will remember, sued to be allowed to carry her handgun to work in a Medford school (The Oregon Firearms Educational Foundation is paying Ms. Katz's legal bills. Her case is currently being appealed.)

Judge Philip Arnold, the same judge who ruled that public employees are not protected by Oregon's preemption statute, ruled that Bob Hunter, the Tribune's Editor, has a right to the personal information of CHL holders. The county sheriff, Mike Winters, had refused to turn over the information, citing privacy and safety concerns.

Hunter stated in an article on October 16,2007 "This is information bought and paid for by the public, and the public has a right to it.”

This is, of course, nonsense. Licence holders pay high fees in order to have their backgrounds checked, their pictures taken and their fingerprints placed on file like criminals. The public, (and Bob Hunter) doesn't contribute a dime.

Hunter and his staff have claimed that they don't plan to release any names. We wonder then, why he wants them.

If the Medford Mail Tribune does publish the personal information of CHL holders, we will assume that they won't mind if we publish the home addresses and other information about their staff.

You can contact Hunter by e-mail here or by regular mail and phone here:
Mail Tribune
P.O. Box 1108
111 N. Fir St.
Medford, OR 97501

El Tejon
April 28, 2008, 01:12 PM
Is Jackson County where the city of Lakeview is located?:uhoh:

April 28, 2008, 02:30 PM
scares the hell outta me... why WOULD they want it other wise, EXCEPT to print it. Where is the NRA when we need 'em.

So when there is a shooting crime they can mention that the state issued this person a concealed weapon permit.

They will not, however, mention if a person DID NOT have one and was carrying illegally.

You can pretty much carve that in stone.

April 28, 2008, 02:47 PM
Concealed carry permits records in Shall Issue states should be closed, the only thing that should be released would be number of applications, and other anonymous statistics.

In May Issue states the records should available for public audit (to prevent permits from only being issued to political donors and such), but there should be some limit to prevent the database from being abused.

April 28, 2008, 02:58 PM
El Tejon -

Is Jackson County where the city of Lakeview is located?

No. Lakeview is the county seat of Lake county. Two counties to the east of Jackson county, bottom (geographically) of the state. Smack dab in the center.

Jackson county is the southernmost county in the state that straddles I-5.

Medford is probably the 5th or 6th biggest city in the state. About 30 miles north of California.

El Tejon
April 28, 2008, 03:13 PM
Right, right! I flew into Jackson County and then drove.

I'm new to your state. Give me time. I don't want to say how long it took me to find my way around the Texas Hill Country.:D

April 28, 2008, 03:26 PM
The NRA is busy fighting for your right to bear arms.Those things are not done outside where you can see them.If it wasn't for them you wouldn't own guns now.

April 28, 2008, 03:35 PM
I don't want to say how long it took me to find my way around the Texas Hill Country. You're in good company, El T.!

Someone asked Jim Bridger if he had ever been lost and he is reputed to have answered: "No, but I've been mighty confused for a month or so." :D:D


April 28, 2008, 03:35 PM
I know how most feel here about this issue for personal reasons. However state records are state records.
They should be public.

What should not exist is a requirement to have a license. The problem would not exist in Vermont, which means the information on who is legaly carrying a concealed firearm is private.

A driver's license is public record.
An addition or modification to your home or property done to code is public record.
Lawsuits or court schedules are public record.

When everything is public record it allows people to gather that information and use it for various malicious purposes.
It also means all documented records are all permanent because private entities will always retain that information even if the government is told to close them or stop publishing them.
It however also allows government discrimination to be public record.

The government's actions as they relate to it's own citizens should be transparent. Usualy that is a good thing. On some issues such as this it is less desirable, but still important.
Is allowing some things to be concealed from the public a good precedent?
In some areas of CA for example it is widely known that some citizens who are members of an elite special class get permits for the same reasons that are not valid for common people.

April 28, 2008, 03:36 PM
Uh... Are we gonna bitch about it, or are we going to call the nice folks, or send them e-mails?

I need to know. I can sit here and bitch about it really easily, almost without even needing to think, but the whole calling/sending e-mail bit is just that tiny bit more difficult.

April 28, 2008, 03:37 PM
El T -

That's okay. Medford is probably the closest airport to Lakeview. Did you do some hunting over there?

Muckford is on the left side of the mountains, Lakeview is on the right side.

Oops! Did I say Muckford? Reverted to my college days. Medford. Yeah, that's what it's called. Medford.

Flintlock Tom
April 28, 2008, 06:28 PM

"That's okay. Medford is probably the closest airport to Lakeview. Did you do some hunting over there?

Muckford is on the left side of the mountains, Lakeview is on the right side.

Oops! Did I say Muckford? Reverted to my college days. Medford. Yeah, that's what it's called. Medford."

Klamath Falls is in between the two and has, not only, an airport, but a Reserve Air Force base.
Good huntn' just northeast of there, for antelope and whitetail.

April 28, 2008, 06:58 PM
About thirty years ago I lived in the Corvallis, Oregon area, when the local paper DID publish the entire roster of persons with concealed carry permits in the county, about two hundred I think. I guess the paper thought it was some kind of shocking scandal, but the issue was totally underwhelming and died out immediately. In those days the permits were only given out at the whim of the County Sherrif, and the list was mostly lawyers, judges, storekeepers, tow truck drivers, a few divorcees, and a lot Nobody cared, and there was no scandal.

About twenty years ago State law was changed and Oregon became a "Shall-Issue" state where the Sherrifs cannot deny a permit without good reason. Now there are something like 170 THOUSAND permit holders state-wide. After a twenty year track-record of only a couple hundred permit revocations, the issue of concealed carry is no longer scandalous. If the Medford paper ever does publish the list, it will probably be even more underwhelming than in earlier decades.....................elsullo

April 28, 2008, 07:22 PM
the issue was totally underwhelming and died out immediately
Yes but 30 years ago we didn't have the Internet, where things tend to accumulate and live on indefinitely in super-easy to access archives across the globe.
We don't need CHL holder info public just like we don't need info on every form 4473 available online.

April 28, 2008, 11:25 PM
I hope that they don't have the chance to gain such information.
I work in the Medical field, and for similar reasons your health information is private, your CCW should be kept private.
If there was a list printed, bad things could happen to and for those who CCW.
Concealed should remain concealed.

April 29, 2008, 07:11 AM
For those who arent OFF memebrs (and you should be ;)), House Rep. Linda Flores has propsed a bill to make CHL info protected and private. Read the link, her reasons make perfect sense, as they are all the same reasons we point out every time this issue has come up anywhere in the country.

Make some calls, emails, and USPS mails to your reps and ask them to sign on to this and get it done.

Representative Linda Flores Responds To Medford Mail Tribune
House Rep Linda Flores today announced her intentions to introduce legislation to protect the privacy of Oregonians with concealed handgun licenses.

Flores said "Many of these people get CHL's because they are worried about their safety, whether it’s from a stalker, a case of domestic violence, or some other threat. Making their names, addresses and other records public might jeopardize their security.”

Flores proposed her legislation after the Medford Mail Tribune won a lawsuit to force the Jackson County Sheriff to divulge the personal information of license holders in that county.

The Tribune started seeking this information after a Jackson County teacher sued to be allowed to carry her firearm on school property. (She lost the first round of that fight but is appealing.)

The Tribune editorialized against public employees being able to carry defensive firearms and then sought the names of all license holders in the County.

Sheriff Mike Winters refused to turn over the names and the Medford Mail Tribune sued.Today on KMED radio,(scroll down for audio links) Winters said he is considering an appeal.

Now Linda Flores is seeking to protect gun owners legislatively.

If you enjoyed reading about "Bad News from Southern Oregon (Medford area)" here in archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join today for the full version!