LTE: Media engaged in 'selective journalism'

June 1, 2005
Dayton Daily News

I read with interest the community discussion, "Privacy versus the right to know," May 22. What I don't understand is why concealed carry is such a big deal in the state of Ohio. After all, Ohio is the 46th state to allow concealed carry. We do not hear this uproar over the right to know in the other 45 states.

I agree with Dayton Police Director Julian Davis, who said, "We have very little concern about people who have the permit and actually carry a weapon. It's the people who don't that we have concern about." That should sum up the issue in a nutshell.

The media are engaged in "selective journalism." Guns are used "defensively" approximately 2 million times per year, but these stories do not make the news.

A review of the top 10 newspapers reveals more verbiage given to gun crimes than defensive use of guns. In 2001, The New York Times published 104 gun crimes stories totaling 50,745 words, yet only a single story of defensive gun use, containing 163 words. USA Today printed 5,660 words on gun crimes, and not one word on defensive gun use. The Washington Post printed 46,884 words on gun crimes and only 953 words on defensive gun use.

How many words has the Dayton Daily News printed about gun crimes versus the defensive use of a gun to thwart a crime?

I believe Jeff Pedro, law enforcement officer and owner of SimTrainer, sums it up when he states, "There's not been a single newsworthy incident where a law-abiding concealed permit holder has done anything illegal by way of committing violent acts against other citizens."

Those people who choose to train, be fingerprinted and subject themselves to a background check in order to obtain a permit, have the right to privacy.

Journalists and everyday citizens do not have the right to know who these people are. Just be assured, they are law-abiding citizens who have made a choice to defend themselves and their families.

Randall W. Klotz

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