Andy Raymond of Engage Armament has just stepped in a hornet’s nest… on purpose.

The battle over the nation’s first smart gun has shifted to Maryland, with a Rockville dealer saying he will sell the Armatix iP1 after a California gun store removed the weapon from its shelves to placate angry gun rights activists.

Andy Raymond, the co-owner of Engage Armament, a store known for its custom assault rifles, said selling the handgun was a “really tough decision” after what happened to Oak Tree Gun Club, which was lambasted by gun owners and National Rifle Association members who fear the new technology will be mandated and will encroach on Second Amendment rights.

Critics are claiming that Raymond’s decision to sell the gun in Maryland is going to trigger a law in New Jersey that mandates all handguns in the state use the technology within three years of a smart gun going on sale anywhere in the United States.

He’s pushing back against those claims.

Raymond said he doesn’t want the law to kick in and didn’t think he’d be responsible if it did, because Oak Tree already had the gun for sale. He said the law is not his problem or Armatix’s.

“This is not Armatix screwing over the people of New Jersey,” he said. “It’s the legislature screwing over the people of New Jersey. Bushmaster didn’t screw over the people of Newtown. Adam Lanza did. It’s just disgusting to me to see pro-gun people acting like anti-gunners. What is free if it’s not choice?”

Raymond is entirely right.

Armatix is manufacturing a product that may fail every single magazine, cost 2-3 times as much as some of the most reliable defensive handguns on the planet, and chambered an anemic .22LR cartridge, but it is their right to do so.

Likewise, New Jersey chose their rabidly anti-gun legislature, and will suffer as a result of their decision-making, but it was their right to do so.

It is also Raymond’s right to carry the Armatix pistol in his store, if he chooses to do so.

It’s also the right of Maryland’s gun owners to either continue buying firearms from Engage Armament, their right to protest the store, and their right to let it slide into bankruptcy by refusing to patronize it, if they choose to do so.

God Bless America, and the freedom we have to make our own choices.