The end of 2008, I bought my first pistol. A Springfield Armory 40 cal XD. Paid a little over $400 for it. At that time, I paid little attention to gun rights advocacy and gun rights groups. I knew i needed a CPL, but I thought it was to carry a gun period. I did not know about open carry. I really did not know of the 2nd amendment, I heard of it, but it was of little consequence to me. I did not even know that our state constitution here in Michigan, guaranteed me the right to own and bear arms. Well, fast forward a few months to February 21, 2009. I had to run an errand to the liquor store. It was almost midnight. I got in my car and drove up to the liquor store. I wasnt even buying liquor, I had a sweet tooth and went to find something to snack on. I pulled up to the liquor store, and I grabbed my gun and put it into my pocket. I figured i'll be in and out. This particular store was located in a bad area by the way which is why I had brought my gun along. As I went in the store, a black car pulled up behind my car and four guys got out. When they came into the store, I automatically knew they were undercover cops. I continued going in about my business because I didnt want to look suspicious. I noticed one walked towards the door like he was trying to block the exit. It looked like they were trying to circle me. Then one yelled at me "Put your hands on your goddamn head!" I did as I was told. I was cuffed and put into their car. While I was in the car, they took my driver license and started filling out some papers. One officer even seemed sympathetic, he said "Look you may not be a bad guy and I know this is a rough area, but you cant be walking around with a gun without a CPL". He may have been well intentioned, but what he really was saying was that I cant have a pistol under my shirt without permission from Lansing (our state capitol). My car was impounded, I was taken to jail. A few days later, I was arraigned. The judge that arraigned me seemed angry at me. His name was Steve Lockhart. He accused me of jepeordizing the safety of the citizens of Detroit and made it quite clear that I should not have had a gun on me at all (since he's a judge, I maybe right in assuming he went to law school. That day where they talked about that pesky 2nd amendment, he may have been out sick). He set my bond and ordered me tethered when I was released and ordered that I attend a gun violence class at 36th district court in downtown Detroit. My parents posted my bond and I went home. I didnt like my court appointed attorney so I hired a private one, which cost $2500 dollars. Even my attorney didnt think I should've had a weapon (do they even mention the 2nd amendment in law school any more!!!). My lawyer was able to get the felony charge dropped down to a misdemeanor charge of failing to register a pistol. At that time I sincerely felt I did something wrong. And then I started to read. Thanks to the internet, I came across many gun advocacy groups and sites such as this. I read the 2nd amendment and how it says that the right to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed. I read the Michigan constitution and how it says "Every person has a right to keep and bear arms for the defense of himself and the state." I realized that I wasn't the one in the wrong, but Lansing was the one in the wrong! By requiring me to get government permission from Lansing (getting a CPL) to carry a pistol that I bought with my own money under my shirt they were infringing on my second amendment rights! In that gun violence class, there was a 70 y/o man that was a jewelry store owner. He had had a CPL, but forgot to renew it when it expired. He was facing the same charge I was. He didn't renew his "right" with the state. So here are some bullet points: -I was arrested for bearing arms w/o govt permission. -I was put in jail for bearing arms w/o govt permission -My car was impounded for bearing arms w/o govt permission -I had to spend $2500 on a lawyer for bearing arms w/o govt permission -I spent $350 to get tethered for bearing arms w/o govt permission -I had my $400+ pistol confiscated by that same government -I was put on probation for bearing arms w/o govt permission Some may say I shouldn't have been at a liquor store late at night in a bad area. But I am not sorry for anything I did. I am sorry that that I had to suffer because the government decided to infringe where they "shall not infringe". I am sorry that over $3000 went down the drain. If I knew then what I know now, I would've contacted every gun rights group I could and let them know my 2nd amendment rights were being **** on by our all powerful politicians in Lansing. Would they have done anything, I dont know. But I would've made them aware. I realize the importance of our 2nd amendment now, they are very important.