Argus Leader (S.D.) puts permit holders names on line

More than 41,000 South Dakotans have permits to carry handguns or conceal them in their cars - the highest rate per capita in the nation, an Argus Leader analysis shows.

Records compiled from the state - and now barred from public view, under a law passed this year by the Legislature - show that 7.4 percent of South Dakota adults had such a permit as of June 30. Next closest are Indiana and Pennsylvania, with 6.4 percent of adults licensed to carry a handgun. . . .

The newspaper's analysis of state permits shows that, overall, the handgun culture is more firmly entrenched in western South Dakota, although McCook County, just west of Sioux Falls, had the highest rate of permits - nearly 12 percent - of any county.
. . .

Unfortunately, the Argus Leader has set up a database so that you can check who has a concealed handgun permit in the state. You would think that the newspaper would point to at least one problem with the permitting system in South Dakota before writing articles such as these.

There is an online poll on concealed handgun laws here, though i don't know how long it will be up.

The articles discuss suicides by firearms, but they fail to note that these suicides would likely have been committed anyway.

Thanks to Rick Statler for alerting me to this.

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Blogger saturdaynightspecial said...

Publishing a gun owner list allows anti-gun crowd to harasss gun owners. It also allows a community (including it's police force) to target and harass a gun owner's children at school. Most police, especially at the leadership level are anti-gun and are ignorant of gun ownership EFFECTS.

A community can arbitrarily decide the children of gun owners are a threat to the safety of a school. This can compel school officials to attempt to permanently remove those children from a school. This can make these children targets of physical violence at school by police and other members of a community. The victims know.

12/18/2006 6:12 AM  
Blogger saturdaynightspecial said...

Prohibiting suicide is not the business of government. And when it does it only makes for a more intrusive government and gives citizens (usually anti-gun citizens) an excuse or justification to involve the government in our private lives.

Qualification to possess a gun should not be subject to the opinions of others, only on whether or not a citizen has a criminal record of violence and or theft. A background check should be done using a computer to check if a citizen has acquired a criminal record; the check should not involve the opinions of others, including police.

It is possible a citizen who does not have a criminal background, or a serious mental condition, to be violent, but we can't control every aspect of life. It's impossible to live with absolute safety and security, and be free too. The only choice is living with some degree of insecurity. In a police state, where safety is considered absolute, our threat to safety can come from the government and from other criminals.

12/18/2006 6:32 AM  
Blogger John Lott said...

"Prohibiting suicide" probably isn't the government's business, but in any case, it is bound to fail when it makes its decision based on banning means of committing suicide. THe empirical work indicates that there are just too many ways of doing it.

12/20/2006 1:13 AM  
Blogger saturdaynightspecial said...

I agree with you John, and I was reminded about those facts when I read one of your excellent books. When guns are banned then people find other sources or tools to commit suicide (the suicide rate does not drop after guns are banned). Guns are only one convenient tool to do it. And guns are conveniently used as a scapegoat on suicide rates.

12/20/2006 5:31 PM  

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