Newspaper conglomerate considers building massive database of gun owners
A U.S. newspaper conglomerate has considered building state-by-state databases of people who have the right to carry concealed firearms.
Civitas Media, which owns 88 newspapers in 12 states and more than 100 total publications, is planning to use public records requests to build their databases, according to an internal Civitas email obtained by the Buckeye Firearms Association in Ohio.
Civitas Media director of content Jim Lawitz emailed content directors, managers, and producers in a January 19 email, saying that exploring the “explosion” of conceal and carry permits in the U.S. will be one of the company’s short-term objectives.
“We are launching two enterprise projects across our newsrooms this month. The first will deal with the creeping influence of heroin in our communities. The deadly drug has quietly taken over, reaching across all age groups and eclipsing meth as the recreational drug of choice,” Lawitz began.
“The second project examines the explosion of ‘conceal and carry’ gun permits across the U.S. Through public records act requests, we will attempt to build state-by-state databases that list those who have the right to carry a concealed weapon,” Lawitz wrote in the email.
When reached for comment by Buckeye Firearms Association, Lawitz said the news conglomerate currently has no plans to publish the database.
“We do not typically publicly comment on internal propriety communication. However, we have no plans to publish any names on any lists. Further, we are open to discuss any published reports,” Lawitz said.
UPDATE: Following the publication of this report, Civitas Media announced that it rejected its internal proposal to build a database of concealed carry permit holders. Civitas CEO Michael C. Bush, who declined to comment to The Daily Caller because he was boarding a plane this morning, later said in a statement, “A poorly crafted internal memo meant to highlight editorial discussions and planning incorrectly indicated that such a database was being planned; it has been considered and rejected.”