New York City's firearms regulations are amongst the most draconian in the land. It's virtually impossible to get a permit to carry a weapon for self-defense, and almost as difficult to get a permit to keep one in your home. Now a Brooklyn man is standing up for his rights - and seems to have found a convenient loophole in the law.
Like America's first soldiers at the Battle of Brooklyn, Michael Littlejohn is fighting for his right to bear arms.
The Revolutionary War buff charges the Bloomberg administration with tyranny for trying to seize his handmade flintlock rifle - a dead ringer for the weapon once used against the redcoats.
"This is the last legal gun that you can have without registration in New York," Littlejohn said. "And yet Mayor Bloomberg is driven crazy by my flintlock gun - the one that won the American Revolution."
The social worker is ... clinging to a little-known exemption in the city's strict gun laws.
The loophole allows license-free ownership of "antique firearms" - defined as rifles that require the bullet and gunpowder to be loaded separately.
Littlejohn's rifle appears to fit the bill.
Loading the weapon, he explains, is a multistep process that takes several pokes with a ramrod and up to a minute to complete.
To fire, the rifle relies on a sharpened piece of flint that produces a spark when the trigger is pulled. That point is moot, Littlejohn says: He doesn't own gunpowder or bullets.
That's not enough to make the NYPD retreat.
The cops visited Littlejohn's apartment and sat down this month with the Tennessee blacksmith who forged the rifle.
The lead detective on the case told Littlejohn's lawyer that he had orders "from higher-ups" to pursue the case, according to an e-mail the lawyer sent to Littlejohn.
There's more at the link.
Good for you, Mr. Littlejohn! I'm proud of you for taking a stand on your rights. You're clearly within the law to possess this rifle - so don't let official intimidation and overbearing arrogance get to you. It's time the bossy bureaucrats of NYC were shown the finger.