In “The Blue Tent Sky: How The Left’s War On Guns Cost Me My Son and My Freedom,” Brian Aitken tells a harrowing tale of injustice when he was sentenced to seven years in prison for possessing weapon that he had the legal right to own.
He lost everything. His freedom and the custody of his son. After spending four months in prison, Aitken’s cause was championed by New Jersey Governor Chris Christie demanded his release.
“Aitken tells his story with a winning combination of the naivety he began with and the hard knowledge he’s learned. He writes to some degree out of a desire for vengeance via exposure on those in the judicial system who wronged him, yet his tone is mostly admirably restrained. He trusts the reader will see the injustice he suffered so doesn’t feel the need to rail about it. He tells his story; he doesn’t try to oversell it,” wrote Brian Doherty of Reason.com.
Aitken’s story is a worthy read. The gist of his story has to do with New Jersey’s Graves Act, which imposes mandatory sentences on certain gun-related crimes.
Some background, Aitken doesn’t have a criminal record and is a fully legal gun owner. The guns in his possession were purchased with his now-estranged wife, who he was fighting with over his then infant son.
Aitken’s “crime” stems from a incident involving an off-handed remark he made to his mother, who then called 911 and hung up. Meanwhile Aitkens is driving, and his life changes in an instant.
“The police show up. They call Aitken, still driving. They threaten him with a statewide manhunt if he doesn’t voluntarily drive back to his parents’ house. They threaten to send him on a 72-hour psych lockdown to pressure him into agreeing to let them search his car. During the search they find the guns that he insists—and no evidence the state ever presented contradicted—he had put in the trunk earlier that day, unloaded, and was preparing to move them from his parents’ house to his new home, both in New Jersey,” wrote Doherty.
The police arrest Aitken for possessing his guns. And because of this, he loses visitation with his son.
BenSwann.com’s Joshua Cook had a chance to speak with Aitken about his book and his story.