Dorothy Maddock's eyes aren't what they used to be and she's hard of hearing, but like many seniors she refuses to be a victim and is packing heat for protection.Well yes, that's true, but I think it's obvious that people should be required to demonstrate that they're competent to use a gun safely before they're allowed to carry. I'm not that worried about people's judgement on when using a gun is appropriate, but I do think it's important that anyone who carries be physically able to use their weapon in a safe and effective manner.
"The idiots that are out there, they don't care about us, what we have," said retiree Maddock. "They'd just as soon kill us for a buck than look at us."
Forty-six states now let citizens carry concealed weapons (search), but is it safe for seniors whose hand and eye coordination isn't what it used to be to own a firearm? Haddock and friends say it's their right and they aren't taking any chances.Own a firearm? Sure. Carry it out into public? No.
States should set up rigorous training and testing programs, and then license anyone who passes, regardless of age. But, just as with driving a car, it's likely that many elderly people should not be allowed to carry handguns in public.