April 24, 2015

Handguns for minors? Alabama bill would let those under 18 possess pistols with parental permission

People under 18 could soon be legally able to have handguns in Alabama if bills in the state House and Senate are approved.
Both branches of the state legislature are considering a bill that, if passed, will allow minors with their parents' permission to posses pistols. 

The bill, HB 328 in the House and SB 262 in the Senate, would also eliminate certain requirements for the registration of the sale of pistols by federally licensed dealers, local law enforcement and the Secretary of State. 
Currently, the Code of Alabama specifies that "no person shall deliver a pistol to any person under the age of 18."
The proposed legislation would amend that law so that it does not apply if the minor has the consent of a parent, guardian, or spouse who is 18 or older.
The bill also says the minor must be with their parent or guardian, or with a licensed or accredited gun safety instructor to have the pistol, unless the weapon is to be used "for hunting, trapping, target shooting, competing in a firearm competition, firearm or hunting training or instruction."

The bill, if passed, would also eliminate record-keeping requirements from the Code of Alabama, removing language that mandates firearm dealers "keep a permanent record of the sale of every pistol, revolver, or maxim silencer, showing the date of sale, serial number, or other identification marks, manufacturer's name, caliber and type, and also the name and address of the purchaser."
Under current law, federally licensed dealers are required to make those records in triplicate, keeping one, sending one to a local law enforcement agency and sending the last to the secretary of State.

Senators Arthur Orr, Greg Reed and Clay Scofield sponsored SB 262. Representatives Ed Henry, Mick Hammond, Barry Moore and Corey Harbison sponsored the House bill. 
Orr said early Friday evening that the bill will not affect federal law prohibiting minors from purchasing firearms and is simply meant to allow minors to use guns to hunt, target practice and other recreational activities. 
Orr said he started hunting with his parents' permission when he was 12, which under current law is technically illegal. He said the bill and its companion in the House are meant to bring reason and common sense to Alabama's gun laws.


  1. This might be a good place to remind folks that the very last part of the human brain to finish the process of physical development -- not the learning/input part, but the actual wiring -- is in the frontal lobes. This incomplete frontal lobe development affects judgement and decision-making until approximately the age of 21; it's no accident that even before we had the scientific backing to understand why, we chose that age to mark the beginning of adult responsibility. Inexplicably dumb choices by kids, coming out of the blue, are something every parent of a teenager is acutely aware of. The time when a young adult reaches full personal responsibility varies from individual to individual. I was using long guns responsibly when I was 12. A pistol would have been a useless curiosity to me.

  2. This sounds like Good positive news. I hope Alabama does indeed change the law and allow Adult Supervised Minors to legally use Handguns. The age of 7 is called and proven to be what is said the age of Reason. To know, think and calculate. As time goes on most people grow further. By the time one is 18, (17) with parents permission one can join the Armed Military Forces in the USA, Serve protect our nation and the Rights and Responsibilities that we espouse and yet those under the magical age of 21, are not able to partake in those rights like, Purchasing a Modern Handgun from a Dealer. This is Wrong and Contradictory to a serious Fundamental American Right, The Second Amendment, which is not a privilege. Yes under Responsible Adult Supervision, Minors can effectively learn good knowledge with Firearms including Handguns. Young, Middle age and Old must all Realize that we all bear Responsibility for our Actions or Inactions. The 6th Commandment from the 10 Commandments states, from the Hebrew; Thou Shalt Not Murder- Waste. Young and Old all must realize this, once the trigger is pulled there is no calling back that bullet! This should and must be instilled to all new Shooters, Hunters and Gun users/owners, weather Young, Middle-aged or Old.