Over a Dozen Heroically Attended the Right to Assemble Event Today, April 1st in Concord
Donning masks from “V for Vendetta”, more than a dozen activists gathered at the New Hampshire state house in Concord today in violation of “HIS EXCELLENCY” governor Chris Sununu’s “order” banning assembly of over ten people. Not only did the police who passed by the event today use their discretion and ignore the event, one Concord police officer even waved to the group, suggesting that he also supported the human right to assemble. While responses from passing motorists varied, the majority were positive, including thumbs-ups, honks, and waves. Negative responses included middle fingers, shaking heads, a thumbs-down, and verbal “quarantine shaming”. Of course, any protest for any topic always elicits negative responses and this one was not unusual.
Curiously, the only media who bothered to attend was an independent videographer who interviewed me and NH republican primary challenger to the incumbent governor Sununu, “Nobody“. After standing by Main Street for over an hour holding signs like, “Social Distancing is Fear, Not Love” and “Assembly is a Human Right”, we took a group photo by the statue of General John Stark. Stark is known for creating the saying from which New Hampshire selected its state motto:
Live Free Or Die; Death Is Not The Worst Of Evils.
Stark is likely rolling in his grave now with Sununu following obediently along with other tyrannical state governors and issuing approximately two dozen emergency orders in the last few weeks, destroying the freedom to do business and the freedom to assemble. While Sununu has not gone as far as some of his counterparts, he is nonetheless presiding over a tremendous increase in authoritarianism as well as economic destruction.
Protestors hold signs and socialize next to Concord’s Main Street.
Thankfully, Sununu won’t be unchallenged in this year’s election. “Nobody” of Keene has thrown his hat into the ring as Sununu’s thus-far lone republican primary challenger for governor. Here’s a recent Boston Globe story that features Nobody and mentioned today’s event at the state house.
Activists joined Nobody from across New Hampshire and even as far away as Western Massachusetts to hold signs and violate “social distancing” rules that are driving people nationwide to suicide from lack of human contact and job losses. Recent news has shown suicide hotline calls are well above normal levels in many places across the United States.
There may indeed be a nasty virus out there. How much worse it is than the flu, which kills tens of thousands in the United States each year, remains to be seen. Fearmongering media and politicians benefit when they ramp up fear in the population. However, the decision on how to handle possible risks in life should be up to the individual, not lying, power-seeking politicians and bureaucrats. Freedom is better than safety or the illusion of safety, especially when the cost is your liberty. Once the government goons take more freedom, don’t expect to ever get it back.
That said, many motorists in Concord seem to be on the side of freedom, and there were a surprising amount of people on the roads, getting life done. Kudos to the police for ignoring the peaceful event. The next Nobody-led assembly event in Concord is the annual 4:20 cannabis smoke out on 4/20, and for the only time – in 2020. Hope to see you there! Nobody’s campaign website is ElectNobody.com.
Nobody tokes at the Concord state house 420 – AP Photo
“Nobody”, the New Hampshire candidate for governor challenging incumbent Chris Sununu in the republican primary has already gotten coverage in the Boston Globe for his announcement of an event to challenge Sununu’s outrageous ban on free assembly of over 50 people. Actually, as I am writing this article, Sununu just announced at a press conference that he’s now restricting gatherings to no more than TEN people. We’re still waiting on the written “order”, but it will likely be posted here to the governor’s website later.
Last week, Sununu announced multiple “executive orders” that destroyed significant freedoms in New Hampshire, like the freedom to run a restaurant or bar as he threatened business owners if they dare to allow customers to eat or drink in their establishments. The hospitality industry is severely damaged as a result, with all servers out of work, volume of orders significantly down, and many restaurants choosing to close down completely as a result. It is an attack on the right to serve our neighbors who wish to take whatever risk and go out to eat. People who wish to quarantine themselves are free to do so without a “order” from the governor but those who wish to continue living a normal life or run their business are being threatened by state agents if they do, all under the excuse of “public health”.
Now-Illegal Gathering of Over a Dozen in Keene, Yesterday
On his official campaign blog, ElectNobody.com, Nobody announced the civil disobedience event and reminded people where the state’s supposed motto came from: “Live free or die; death is not the worst of evils.” – General John Stark. Before last week, New Hampshire was not a free state, but now all illusions of freedom have been completely wiped away and it’s become all-out tyranny. Something must be done. It’s time to stand up for the freedom to assemble.
Here is an event to which you can RSVP at Liberty.menu – please do. Bring your friends, signs, and your video cameras. See you at the state house steps at 2pm, Wednesday April 1st. Maybe we’ll go up and pay a visit to Sununu’s office while we’re there too!
After a decade of attending various cannabis legalization and decriminalization hearings at the Concord state house, this week’s hearing for HB-1648 was refreshing. HB 1648 is a really good cannabis decrim bill that goes even further than the one that passed in 2017 that made possession of under 3/4ths of an ounce of flower and under 5 grams of concentrate a violation instead of a misdemeanor. If it passes this year, HB 1648 will eliminate any penalty for people over 21 possessing those amounts. It will no longer be something police can act on at all.
The bill is not perfect, of course, as I point out during my testimony in the two-hour long hearing. It still treats people under 21 like children by retaining violation-level penalties for people between 18 and 21, and also penalizes people under 18 for possession by forcing them into the juvenile system. That’s not fair or right. Also, the limits on the amounts that would be legal to possess are too low. That said, it’s a major step in the right direction and does it without creating a taxing and regulatory structure.
The real shocker at the public hearing this week was the lack of any police presence. Having attended these cannabis hearings over more than a decade, this is the first time where the police not only did not speak against the bill, but weren’t even there watching. The chiefs of police association did sign the blue sheet against the bill, and were the only ones to sign against it. All other signatures were for the bill. Plus, of all the various people who spoke, there was only one who spoke against it, the woman from prohibitionist busybody group “New Futures”. All the other voices were in favor of the bill passing.
Nobody told the house Criminal Justice panel that rather than punishing people under eighteen by putting them into the harsh juvenile system if they are caught with cannabis, the most the state agents should do is call their parents. He said further, “The idea that kids should be subject to more criminal liability than adults kind of flies in the face of reason, when you think about it. I mean, we’re going to attach a criminal penalty to your behavior because your mind is not well enough formed yet to make decisions that have a lasting impact. Well, don’t you think it’s possible that taking criminal sanction against somebody has a lasting impact on their life? Maybe they shouldn’t be bound to that by a decision they make so young.”
Last Friday, future president of the United States Vermin Supreme and his supporters donned ponies, guns, signs, and masks to march on Concord New Hampshire’s state house on the final day to file to be in the Libertarian NH presidential primary for 2020.
Hardcore civil disobedient activists who came out in the rain for 4/20/2019! -Photo courtesy Shire Free Media
For years, I’ve been reporting on the brutally slow political progress in New Hampshire, of ending the prohibition on possession, growing, and selling of cannabis, one of the most amazing and useful plants on the planet. Though New Hampshire finally legalized medical cannabis in 2013 it took a few years for the first dispensary to open due to bureaucratic foot-dragging – as patients died waiting.
Given sales of and growing cannabis are still criminal offenses and people can still be ticketed for possession, the annual 420 rallies on the steps of the state house in Concord continued into its ninth year last weekend. At least sixty hardcore activists came out from across the state on April 20th to gather on what started as a rainy afternoon but ultimately cleared up in time for the mass civil disobedience at 4:20pm.
Rich Paul gave his tradition invocation and spoke on why government regulation of the cannabis business was unnecessary and Rick Naya led the crowd in a moment to remember the activists who have died or been incarcerated along the road to where we are today. Thank you to everyone who came out this year despite the weather. Mark your calendars for April 20th of 2020 and join us in Concord next year! Here’s the video I took from this year’s event: