Some Iowa lawmakers want to let 12-year-olds shoot handguns - Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Some Iowa lawmakers want to let 12-year-olds shoot handguns

KEOKUK, Ia. (WGEM) - Preteens with handguns? That's a proposal causing a lot of conversation in Iowa.

Some Iowa lawmakers want to make it legal for 12-year-old kids to fire handguns.

One grandfather and gun shop owner says he supports the legislation, but not everyone is on board.

10-year-old Noah and his brother 9-year-old Sylas come into their grandpa Bruce Scott's gun shop in Keokuk often.

The boys say they love shooting.

"We went shooting once with our friends and it's fun," Sylas Scott said.

"My two, I took out at like seven and eight years old when they were pretty adult, and actually started shooting with them at that time and now my grandkids," Bruce Scott said. "We're hunting with them also."

Under current Iowa law, you must be at least 14 years old to fire a handgun.
The proposed law would allow kids as young as 12 years old to use handguns with adult supervision for things like target practice and competition.

Scott says as long as the kids are mature enough and the gun it isn't too powerful for them to handle, he supports the proposal.

"Most parents, they're going to make sure their child knows what's going on and the safety factors in it," Bruce Scott said. "They're not just going to let them go out and take a gun and shoot with them."

Noah says he loves target practice and thinks kids his age can do it safely.

"I think you should be able to go shooting with your dad if he is watching you and supervising you and making sure you're doing it right," Noah Scott said.

Others say they are skeptical of the new proposal and are concerned with the safety of the kids.

"I think it is absolutely unnecessary that a child even using a handgun at 14 would be a little too much," Barbara Ziegler said. "Maybe they should wait until they are at least 16."

Scott does say parents need to make sure they are not giving a child a high-caliber handgun because they may not be ready for it.

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