Senate Bill 796 would require applicants for an Oregon concealed handgun license to prove they can shoot a handgun. Who could argue with that? Except that the original bill by Sen. Floyd Prozanski of Eugene was unworkable. It would require applicants to get a score of at least 70 percent on a shooting test almost impossible to complete for someone who buys a five-shot revolver for personal protection and wants to carry it around.
Of the 50 shots in the test, 10 rounds would have to be fired with three seconds allowed for each two shots. The applicant would almost have to be a seasoned wheel-gunner equipped with a speed loader in order to accomplish that — or buy a semi-automatic with at least a 10-round magazine. An amendment has been offered to the bill for possible action today, April 17. It would require an applicant to hit 21 of 30 shots, with 10 each taken from three, five and seven yards, and there’s no time limit. That’s much more reasonable.
The amendment also deals with logistics. It would allow applicants to take the shooting test up to a year before applying.
The main problem remains: The bill has no purpose other than to create red tape and expense for license applicants. If there’s a problem with CHL holders trying to shoot people and missing, no one has pointed it out. (hh)