Proposed Legislation Could Tie Gun Licenses to Social Media Use
User Name: Annie Oakley. Password: Bang-bang! Should that be enough to deny you a handgun license in New York State? What about opinions posted on Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, Twitter or searches on Google, Bing or Yahoo?
It's a possibility under a bill proposed by New York State Senator Kevin Parker (D., Brooklyn). The Senator's legislation would add recent media postings and a year of search histories to a background check into criminal activity and mental health issues when an application is submitted for a handgun license.
Parker says delving into online use might turn up racial slurs, threats of violence, links to terrorism or other red flags causing "good cause for the denial of a license."
Parker's bill was submitted November 14th.
Supporters say many recent shootings were preceded by disturbing posts online while others say many of those involved in gun violence do not possess weapons legally.
There are also concerns being voiced about the cost of implementation, privacy issues and just what other situations the precedent might be expanded to should the gun control aspect of social media searches gain approval.
No vote has been scheduled.