Last week, the principal of Monadnock Regional Middle/High School sent a letter to certain parents promoting Free Keene, and for that I thank them. However, the letter also told a big lie. The letter’s purpose was to stir up concern among parents that some people from Free Keene have been recording on campus, (here’s the video) and further claims falsely:
This is a violation of your child’s privacy and because it happened on school property, we want to make sure you are aware of this video.
This is a lie. It was not Derrick’s intention to record the students, and the principal’s letter does admit the students were filmed inadvertently. That said, even if it had been his intention to record the students, it would not have been a violation of their privacy, given they were all outdoors, on ostensibly public property. Beyond that, the school district has already informed parents their kids will be recorded, not just for their school security system, but for newspaper, radio, TV and web! Here’s the proof. According to the “student registration” form for the Monadnock Regional School District, which covers Monadnock Regional Middle/High School, parents agree to the following statement, in a lengthy four-page form (check the bottom of page 3 for this):
I agree to allow the student to be recorded or photographed for public use by newspaper, radio, TV and web
So, this is nothing more than a dishonest, fearmongering hit piece that is designed to make the school look like they are somehow protecting the students from us horrible bloggers by claiming they are consulting with law enforcement and have formulated plans to remove us from the premises next time. All the while, they are recording the students on their own security system on a daily basis, and have had all parents sign a waiver allowing any media to use their images!
Gov. Maggie Hassan has said she does not support a bill that would decriminalize possession of one-half ounce or less of marijuana. This is becoming a source of consternation for Granite Staters of all ages and across the political spectrum, and it is especially confusing to younger voters who see our current marijuana penalties as senseless and archaic.
HB 618, which would reduce this penalty from a misdemeanor to a violation, passed the House in March. The vote was an overwhelming 297-67, with 96 percent of House Democrats and 72 percent of House Republicans voting in favor. Unfortunately, since Gov. Hassan has not taken a favorable position on the bill, it faces an uncertain fate in the Senate.
This bill would not make marijuana legal, as voters in four states and the District of Columbia have chosen to do. Instead, what we’re talking about here is a much more limited reform, one that would put New Hampshire’s marijuana penalties more nearly into line with the penalties found in other New England states. It would also be consistent with public opinion and with the New Hampshire Constitution, which advises that “all penalties ought to be proportioned to the nature of the offense.”
When I was running for the Republican nomination for governor in 2014, I came out strongly in favor of decriminalizing marijuana possession. I did so with the expectation that I would receive pushback from some in my party who had been supporting the War on Marijuana their entire lives. (more…)
For those who have been following the saga of the Shire Free Church: Monadnock, here’s the latest, much of which was well-covered by the Keene Sentinel’s Martha Shanahan last week. After bringing on liberty attorney Brandon Ross for our tax appeal case last year, the church board decided to dismiss the 2014 case in favor of re-filing in 2015. We’ve since filed the 2015 tax exemption with our attorney’s oversight.
Given the state’s rejection of multiple liberty churches’ tax exemptions in 2014 (including the Peaceful Assembly Church – also represented by Ross), the board wanted to make sure we were putting our best foot forward, legally.
There has been a misconception that this is all about money; it’s about religious freedom. We don’t believe that the Shire Free Church, or any other church, should owe taxes. However we have nonetheless continued to give voluntary contributions to the City of Keene’s operations we support, like road maintenance and fire protection.
Shire Free Church: Monadnock is established to promote peace and other divine virtues, and to promote the study of religion in freedom and fellowship. We believe there are many paths to God, one for each individual. We believe God is the source of all creation; and divinity is expressed through compassion, empathy, forgiveness, freedom, generosity, honesty, humility, kindness, mercy, patience, and peace.
This is not about keeping money. If it were, we’d not be hiring an attorney. In fact, Shire Free Church: Monadnock’s board decided to go ahead and pay the full amount demanded by the city for 2014 in order to forestall any violent acts by the city agents and start our 2015 appeal without any liens on the property. The state religion is a dangerous, aggressive religion and we will use their system to protect your right to choose a religion of peace instead of believing in the violent, morally-corrupt state.
I will write up some future posts about this incident (was awaiting outcome before writing anything) but there are a few things I would like to get out immediately:
1) The “substance” found was not Klonopin. I’m still baffled why the sheriff department was telling the people who were calling on my behalf that it was Klonopin when the officers involved in the search identified the substance during the actual search. The substance is a medicine for which I have a prescription to treat a condition I have.
2) I really appreciate all the assistance I received from the “liberty” community at large especially Virginia copblockers and Keene activists (I’ll write up a post about this later).
3) New Hampshire is honestly the “best” state in my opinion in terms of freedom (post to follow).
4) My real “sin” in my opinion was not consenting to a search of the vehicle.
This is my analysis of Cantwell’s self defense incident. In my capacity as Mad Monk of the Church of the Invisible Hand, I will present it based on the principles of the Church, which are Peace, Love, Balance and Harmony.
First, let us examine principle of Peace. The Church believes that the best rule of behavior to achieve Peace is the Non-Aggression Principle. We believe that the only legitimate use of violence is in defense of yourself, another human or the property of a person. It is the only principle we will impose on others … we will forcibly prevent others from doing us harm. Cantwell’s behavior was completely in line with the principle of Peace. He does have a natural right to videotape a public street — public being defined as unowned or owned by an illegitimate entity like Government. Not only did he not initiate force, but when a credible threat of force was brought to bear against him, and he legally and morally could have fired in self-defense, he still forbore from firing, and brought the incident to a conclusion where nobody was harmed. That is the best possible outcome of a self-defense situation.
Secondly, let us examine the principle of Love. The Church believes as our Estimated Prophet Robert A Heinlein wrote.that “Love is that state where the well-being of another becomes essential of our own”, An (more…)