(Southaven, MS) As Brian Hale started looking for a new gun over the weekend, he took comfort in the fact that Mississippi lawmakers want to keep his gun ownership private, ”It’s my business, it’s nobody else’s. It’s my private right. I feel like that’s nobody else’s business but my own if I decide to get a permit, that’s my right”.
Both houses of the legislature passed, and sent to Governor Phil Bryant, a bill to make the list of Mississippi gun permit holders private information.
Governor Bryant signed the bill into law Monday afternoon "As a matter of public safety, I remain opposed to releasing personal information on law abiding gun owners," Gov. Bryant said. "Sensitive gun owner information is entitled to privacy protections—just like medical records, tax documents and personnel files."
It comes after New York released that information to a newspaper, which published it.
Those who favor release of public records say the information belongs to all of us, but others say it could make permit holders potential targets.
”It would be a shame if, most of all, the Governor of Mississippi let it go public, and New York ought to be ashamed of itself,” said gun shop owner Jane Dabbs.
Both a blogger from Jackson and the Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal have already asked for the records. So far, the State hasn’t turned them over.
It’s unclear if the new law will cover those retroactive requests, but nearly everyone here hopes it does.
”If somebody goes and gets a permit, that is a concealed carry permit and they expect it to stay that way, concealed and secret,” said Dabbs.