Dispatch Editors on gun bill: Facts vs. Rhetoric (yet again)

By Gerard Valentino

In the recent Editorial “Shoot it Down” the Columbus Dispatch once again insults the integrity and intelligence of Ohioans. To claim that allowing legally concealed guns in cars is somehow unsafe for law enforcement officers is laughable.

From the story:

    Because the new bill would remove the requirements that holstered guns and cases be in plain sight, a driver or passenger could keep a loaded gun on or under a seat, close at hand and ready to confront anyone who walks up to the car.

    Troopers and other law-enforcement officers approaching vehicles during a traffic stop have good reason for wanting to see clearly any guns in easy reach.

    Many people stopped for various traffic offenses react unreasonably to being detained. Sometimes alcohol and drugs are involved in this irrational behavior. When weapons are at hand, this situation can change from merely confrontational to life-threatening.

The Dispatch once again makes a strong emotional plea to consider officer safety. And once again it is devoid of any facts. We sound like a broken record on the issue because our opponent’s stance against guns has never risen above, “we are scared of guns so you should be too.”

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The Dispatch Editorial Board also has a strange compulsion to treat law-abiding citizens like sex offenders by printing licensee private information. Once again they make a great emotion based argument on why Ohioans need to know who among them carry a gun and for the need to make sure the system works.

Again, from the story:

    Taft has opposed any change in the law that would remove journalists’ access to the names of concealed carry permit-holders. He recognizes that, because the law doesn’t open this record to the public at large, the loss of journalists’ access would leave Ohioans with little or no way to find out whether county sheriffs are administering the permit program properly.

    These records should be public and not just available to journalists.

Gun advocates feel like a broken record during the debate over concealed carry issues and no more than the so-called open records provision. It’s wonderful that the Dispatch cares so much about Ohioans that they declared themselves our protector.

But, who is going to protect the stalker victim that has her name printed in the paper? Or the rape victim that moved across the state so she won’t have to live with the fear that her attacker will return?

Imaging being arrested and charged with a crime because your Honda Civic isn’t a hybrid and the city of Lorain recently passed a ban against gas only cars. If one day Cleveland required an extra fee to make your drivers license legal it would also create problems for drivers from other parts of the state.

Currently, that is how gun laws are written. The state allows legal concealed carry but a given city might outlaw a specific gun or type of gun. Such a situation makes carrying a gun almost impossible.

Don’t think for a minute that the Dispatch editorial board doesn’t realize the myriad of anti-gun laws statewide are like legal landmines looking for their first victim.

In my short time in Columbus the Dispatch Editorial Board has used the worst sort of emotion based sensationalism to pursue their anti-gun agenda. Many, if not all, of their points wouldn’t pass muster in an elementary beginning debate class.

Where the pro-gun movement has fact, the Dispatch has conjecture, where the pro-gun movement has success in other states to point to the Dispatch has their own determination to see bad things happen and then exploit the tragedy.

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