OFCC announces establishment of Ohio Media Monitoring Task Force
CLEVELAND, February 19, 2004 – Ohioans For Concealed Carry, Ohio’s largest grassroots concealed carry rights organization, has announced the formation of the OFCC Media Monitoring Task Force ([email protected]).
The organization, comprised totally of grassroots volunteers from across the state, will monitor Ohio's media outlets, documenting any instances of abuse of the public records provision in the state's new concealed handgun license (CHL) law.
"There are a few proverbial rotten apples in the media that are promising to spoil the bunch," said Chad Baus, OFCC spokesperson. "The Cleveland Plain Dealer, Elyria Chronicle Telegram and Columbus Dispatch have already indicated that they plan to publish lists of persons who choose to obtain a CHL. These editors need to understand that Ohio's law-abiding citizens do not deserve to be treated like convicted sex offenders."
In his floor speech before passage of the law, Rep. James Aslanides (R-Coshocton) said that he would lead an effort to roll back the media access if the privilege is abused. "If they abuse the privilege, we can cause them to lose the privilege," he declared, pointing out that the Pennsylvania state legislature struck a similar provision after a newspaper published a list of permit holders. The Task Force plans to submit a compilation of evidence of any abuses to Rep. Aslanides, and any legislator or committee empowered to make legislative changes to the Ohio CHL law.
"The recent debate over public records provisions in Ohio's concealed carry law sent the media into full blown fits about infringing freedom of the press and their self-proclaimed position as protectors of the common person from abuses by 'Big Brother'," observed OFCC Central Ohio Coordinator Gerard Valentino. "This begs the question - if the media is watching 'Big Brother', who is watching them? The sad, painful answer is that nobody protects us from the whim of so-called journalists concerned more with pushing their own agenda instead of reporting the news."
These editors claim they are acting "to give the rest of the public what the legislature denied it." Quite the contrary. By publishing these lists, liberal news editors will be denying a whole class of people (who will soon be proven as some of the state's most law-abiding citizens) something the legislature is obligated to protect - the individual right to privacy.
"To read the many complaints about the public records provision from the state's liberal media, one can't help but wonder whatever happened to their concerns for privacy," said OFCC PAC Chairman Jim Irvine. "That subject used to be a media favorite, but it seems to drop off their radar screen when it comes to law-abiding gun owners. We want everyone to know it hasn't dropped off of ours."
Persons interested in volunteering with the OFCC Media Monitoring Task Force should send an email to [email protected], indicating where they live, and what news outlets they can commit to observing on a daily basis.
Why we need the OFCC Media Monitoring Task Force:
Rotten Apples and Sour Grapes
Ohio Newspaper Association advising members to compile lists of CHL applicants
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