Republican Colorado state Sen. John Cooke’s measure to correct an extraordinary contradiction in which members of the military cannot apply for a Right-to-Carry permit before age 21 passed the Senate last week. “Here are 18-, 19- and 20-year-olds who are in the Army. They can be a door gunner and fire tanks. They can go overseas and defend us, but they can’t come back to Colorado and defend themselves with a concealed-carry permit,” Cooke told The Greeley Tribune. “That’s wrong.”
The creation of the legislation actually began as a family matter. Earlier this year, Cooke’s daughter—a 19-year-old in the Army Reserves—was denied a concealed-carry permit as Colorado law requires applicants to be 21. Getting the bill through the Senate was Cooke’s first step in rectifying the oversight; now he sets his sites on the Democratic-controlled House. “It’s a good opportunity for the House Democrats to say ‘we are reasonable on gun issues,’” he said.