In an effort to get kids outdoors and bolster the state's sagging hunter numbers, the Wisconsin Senate has passed legislation to lower the legal hunting age from 12 to 10, allowing additional youths to hunt within arms-length of an adult.
I know, we've had the "how-young-is-too-young" discussion about umpteen times. But the specifics of this bill makes it different, according to a Wausau Daily Herald:
_[Sen. Jim] Holperin says his legislation is "just replete with safety requirements," but we've read the bill through several times and safety requirements are about as scarce as 30-point bucks.
_True, the proposal requires a 10-year-old hunter to be accompanied by a mentor -- an adult who holds a hunting license and always must be within "arm's reach" of the student hunter. And the pair can share only one gun between them.
The bill doesn't require the 10-year-old or the adult hunter to complete a hunter's safety course.
Does the paper have a point? In Wisconsin, hunters born before 1973 are not required to have hunter-safety certification--which means a fair number of hunters old enough to have 10-year-old children may have never taken a course. Should they and/or the child be required to do so under this new legislation?