Letter-writers correct Toledo Blade's erroneous editorial opposing sunshine amendment to Media Access Loophole

by Chad D. Baus

The Toledo Blade has published three letters to the editor correcting them on their facts, and opinions, as expressed in an editorial published on October 10, entitled "Don't conceal gun data."

In the editorial, unidentified Blade editors write that legislation that seeks to shine a light of openness on a secretive process by which journalists can gain access to the confidential information about concealed handgun license-holders should be opposed because of a concern for...openness. The editors also made factual misstatements, which readers, including myself, quickly sought to correct.

Blade wrong on handgun licenses:

There are two problems with your Oct. 10 editorial "Don't conceal gun data."

There are far more than 60,000 people in Ohio with concealed handgun licenses, as you say. The number is closer to 250,000, according to the office of state Attorney General Mike DeWine.

Because The Blade claims to be a proponent of openness, you should be jumping to support Republican state Rep. Joe Uecker's bill, which seeks to shine a light on what has been a secretive process.

Instead, you oppose the bill while failing to explain why you believe a publicly announced hearing in a courtroom would be less open than journalists going to a sheriff's office and obtaining the confidential information in secret.

This bill would bring a high level of openness to journalists' secretive requests. Ohio's concealed-carry permit holders have a right to know who is trying to gain access to their confidential information, and should be able to provide testimony about why that information should continue to be protected.

Chad Baus

EDITOR'S NOTE: To show you how out of touch the anonymous Blade editors are on this issue, they had to contact me to ask for my source on the actual number of Ohio CHLs, which they then added to my letter. They also saw fit to add Rep. Uecker's political party affiliation, as though that has some bearing on the letter...

Two more letters followed:

Permit does point to gun in home

Your editorial quotes Dennis Hetzel, the Ohio Newspaper Association's executive director, as saying that because a person is found to have a concealed-carry permit, that information should not give a thief any reason to believe that the permit holder has a gun in the home.

Really? If I knew you purchased a dog license, it's not too farfetched to assume that you own a dog.

Robert Schmidlin
Springfield Township

Gun data editorial off the mark

The writers of Blade editorials don't list their names on the Pages of Opinion, yet they see no issue with violating the privacy and safety of Ohioans with concealed-carry permits ("Don't conceal gun data," editorial, Oct. 10).

If concealed-carry permit holders are listed in gun violence police reports, I'm sure all you intellectuals would have no problem getting those statistics from local law enforcement agencies, although I doubt there would be many, if any.

Criminals don't bother to follow the law when they carry weapons. They just carry despite the laws.

John Glaza
Springfield Township

Chad D. Baus is the Buckeye Firearms Association Vice Chairman.

Related Article:
Bill which would shine light of openness on Media Access Loophole requests opposed by Ohio Newspaper Assoc.

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