A man in Iowa is fuming because his daughters are no longer allowed to shoot at their favorite gun range.
The Des Moines Register says a law “no one knew about” prohibits anyone under 20 from shooting a gun in Iowa unless they’re under the supervision of a parent or instructor. Anyone under 14 can’t shoot a gun at all.
Nathan Gibson wants the law changed.
State law provides no minimum age for long guns. The rationale has been that long guns are used for hunting, and any child should be able to hunt with supervision from a parent.
The bill’s intent was to allow more Iowa kids to safely practice shooting handguns, but the effort has backfired. It became mired in controversy and failed to become law, but because of the publicity, more gun ranges are enforcing the existing law.
Youth under 14 who once shot handguns at ranges are now being barred at ranges across the state, lawmakers and gun advocates say. No one representing the Polk City range could be reached for comment.
“It’s unfortunate,” said the bill’s author, state Rep. Joe Riding, D-Altoona, who taught his own daughter how to shoot when she was 9.
“If a parent wants to involve their youngster in an activity they love, there’s no reason why they should not involve their 6-year-old daughter or their 9- or 10-year-old daughter,” Riding told the Register. “Unfortunately, politics got involved.”
The girls have now posted YouTube videos asking that Iowa’s age restriction law be scrapped. An Iowa politician says the minimum age for shooting a gun in the state might well have been lowered to 12 this year but the Iowa Gun Owners organization demanded the restrictions be eliminated altogether.