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LA Times Writer: Real Estate Listings Should Report Neighbors Who Own Guns

LA Times

Virginia Heffernan believes home buyers should be able to see gun ownership statistics in a designated area, saying gun violence should have a “meaningful tax.”


A columnist at the Los Angeles Times, who previously authored a freak-out piece over her Trump-supporting neighbor who shoveled her driveway, now suggests real estate listings show the rates of gun ownership in a surrounding area.

Virginia Heffernan made headlines in February for a column likening Trump supporters to the terrorist group Hezbollah and Nazis. The basis for her piece was her bizarre anger over a conservative neighbor who was kind enough to plow the snow from her driveway. “Loving your neighbor is evidently much easier when your neighborhood is full of people just like you,” Heffernan wrote.

The writer received a great deal of backlash for her intolerant article, in which she pondered, “What do we do about the Trumpites around us?”

Now, she is back at it again, arguing that home buyers should be able to see gun ownership statistics on real estate listings and that guns and gun violence should have a “meaningful tax.”

“Real-estate listings should include prevalence of gun-ownership in a 50-mile radius and number of annual mass shootings in the region,” Heffernan wrote. “Time to change what a ‘bad neighborhood’ is.”

“[A]nd introduce a meaningful tax on guns and gun violence,” she continued. “No one should say ‘this is a great place to raise kids’ about neighborhoods where even one person has an assault rifle.”

In response to Heffernan, someone sent a link to a 2012 piece in The Atlantic that described the outcome of when an interactive map of gun owners was published in New York counties by the Journal-News. Residents were infuriated and uncomfortable with them and their neighbors being doxxed. Hefferman responded to the person, “Not doxing. Just available data on gun ownership per capita,” ignoring the clear privacy invasion the local paper undertook.

While the left-leaning columnist seeks to doxx those who exercise their Second Amendment rights, it is unclear how her idea would help define a “good” or “bad” neighborhood. A widely-cited Justice Department report from 2019 found 90 percent of guns used in crime are obtained illegally.