Can A Blind Person Buy A Gun In Iowa?
Since the latest deadly school shooting, numerous stories about gun laws have been floating around social media. Some have proven to false, while others are true. One post that has gone viral claims that a blind person in Iowa can purchase a gun. Is it true?
This one is actually true, however, the law itself isn't new. A change in Iowa's gun laws in 2011 changed the state's gun permit rules to 'shall issue' to local sheriffs. That means that county sheriffs, who issue gun permits, could only deny a person if they had a specific reason such as a criminal background. Having limited vision or no vision is not a valid reason to deny a permit under Iowa law.
Now I know how this sounds. It made me shake my head at first too. But the law was changed to prevent people with a physical disability from being able to obtain a gun. I can understand that law, as people with disabilities should have just as many rights as people without them.
It turns out that blind people aren't buying guns left and right anyway. Linn County Sheriff Brian Gardner told KCRG that he has issued one or two permits for guns to people with impaired vision since 2011. Iowa law requires a permit to buy or carry a handgun, but not to purchase a rifle or shotgun.