- Associated Press - Monday, April 6, 2015

EAST DUNDEE, Ill. (AP) - A gun range in suburban Chicago is teaching children how to shoot pistols.

The Chicago Tribune (https://trib.in/1GgRjIx ) reports the class for kids at GAT Guns in East Dundee started about a year ago. Manager Randy Potter said the range started the class because parents wanted to bring in their children to shoot. The range leaves it up to parents whether their child is mature enough to handle a gun.

Children as young as 7 took part in a recent session. They practiced firing guns while they were unloaded. If they showed they were safe with the weapons, they were allowed to use live ammo on the range.

Jerry Kau instructed the kids in the class, telling them to always treat a gun like it’s loaded and that they can’t be too safe with guns. He told them they wouldn’t be treated like children.

“Everybody is 40 to me,” Kau said to the children. “We’re going to treat you like a grown-up with a gun.”

Parent Sergio Meilman of Deerfield took his 12-year-old son and 11-year-old daughter to the class. He said he teaches his children that guns are weapons and tools, but not toys.

“You can either drive a nail with a hammer and use it properly or you can bash someone in the head with it, use it improperly,” Meilman said. “And with a firearm, if you use it properly and safely, it’s a lot of fun. At the same time, you can hurt someone if you use it improperly.”

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Information from: Chicago Tribune, https://www.chicagotribune.com

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