Iowa bill would allow supervised children under 14 to shoot handguns

Supporters said it is about parents having more rights with their children.

DES MOINES, IA (WCMH)– Currently in Iowa, a person has to be 14 years or older to use a handgun, but a new bill looks to change that.

According to KCCI, the bill, which would allow supervised children to use handguns, is expected to pass the Republican controlled House, but not the Senate.

Opponents of the bill said children’s brains aren’t developed to handle the responsibility of a lethal weapon.

Supporters said it is about parents having more rights with their children.

“We want to make sure we turn power back to parents, allow them to make the decision if their children are ready or not. If they don’t want to shoot or teach them gun safety that’s also their choice,” Jack Highfill, who proposed the bill, told KCCI.

However, legislators who oppose the bill said they are worried about the effects on children.

“What this bill does, the bill before us, allows for 1-year-olds, 2-year-olds, 3-year-olds, 4-year-olds to operate handguns. We do not need a militia of toddlers. We do not have handguns that I am aware of that fit the hands of a 1- or 2-year-old,” said said Democratic Rep. Kirstin Running-Marquardt.

The bill was part of a series of gun related laws in the Iowa House. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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