Yesterday was one of those epic days for pro-liberty activists in New Hampshire. My day: Get driver’s license renewed at DMV and pay $50 for the “privilege to travel” (boo!); make protest signs; don my “this is my protest sock” socks; go to rallies at the state house; then, dinner and a show.
April 20th is traditionally the day when cannabis culture is celebrated at the steps of the state house. Yesterday, in addition, a teachers’ group hosted a demonstration called “Enough” about selective solutions to gun violence in schools. (This is a polite way of saying they weren’t exactly “down” with any pro-gun suggestions.)
I gave a lot of thought to the sign I wanted to take. Something that would get people thinking, hopefully spur conversation, and work at both rallies. I finally settled on “Pro Gun/Anti War.”
At the 420 rally, cannabis activists gave speeches, including Rich Paul, Rick Naya, Representative Caleb Dwyer (LP). I spoke about the importance of personal responsibility, how the federal government’s marijuana policies have hurt ordinary people, and how states’ rights on cannabis (and other things) should prevail. I mentioned my Senate race, and asked people to come talk to me if they had questions about my sign.
Supporters came over afterwards to say they loved it, got it, and wanted to help with my campaign. The first, best thing you can do is tell your friends and neighbors that a real choice exists this November, and that it is important to vote for liberty candidates, even if, or especially if you don’t usually vote.
Voters in District 20 (Manchester Wards 3, 4, 10, 11, and Goffstown) have a choice this November between a ten term incumbent the NHLA calls a “Constitutional Threat,” or me, an emancipator of the individual, a protector of the smallest minority… someone who cares about YOU, the taxpayer. Because I am one.
Before I arrived, according to the honorable Glen Aldrich, this happened: “A state trooper came out and told everyone to leave, many started walking away, Rick Naya tells everyone to come back then tells the trooper cannabis is decriminalized and come give him a ticket and go away. The trooper walked back into state house never to return.”
We held a moment of silence to honor the millions of people who have been harmed by the War on Drugs and then, as is custom, people sparked up at the stroke of 4:20PM.
I wandered over to the “Enough!” rally being held near Main Street. I stood towards the back with my sign, and was joined by a man whose sign read: “Scared of Guns in NH? Move to Massachusetts, ‘The Nanny State!’” The “Enough!” folks didn’t like this and swarmed around us, trying to block our signs. We were joined by a few additional counter-protestors, including a man with a baby swaddled to his chest who said he was glad we were there. “Can I stand with you?” “Yes, please!”
As I listened to the competing chants coming from the different camps–the cannabis activists demanding, “Leave Us Alone!” and the teachers chanting, “Enough!” with calls to “Do Something”–I was struck by this incongruity.
THIS is the battle for the heart of New Hampshire.
You can organize society in two ways: Top down (government as a false god, dictating everything) or bottom up (individualism with a few ground rules). Here we had two competing groups feeling equally strongly about their approach: The teachers favoring socialistic answers, more restrictions of INHERENT rights, more nanny statism; the stoners favoring a hands-off approach, desiring less police- and nanny statism.
And there’s the rub: As Granite Staters, we have to decide. We have to decide whether we want to walk this path towards socialism and its undeniably disastrous ends, or whether New Hampshire’s “Live Free or Die” ethos is the very thing that makes our home so uniquely awesome, and that we need to fight to preserve our freedoms.
I believe “free markets, free people, and free enterprise” is worth preserving. I believe our natural rights are worth fighting for. That’s why I am running for office.
I left Concord behind to attend a birthday party of Christine B, the FSP’s former events’ director and PorcFest XI producer. A dozen or so “liberty ladies” met for dinner at Piccolos in downtown Manchester, and then headed to The Palace Theater to see “Mamma Mia!”
At dinner, I mentioned to the wife of a core activist of the New Hampshire Liberty Alliance how much I appreciate the hard work he puts in to creating the weekly Gold Standard that makes pro-liberty recommendations on bills. This dedicated wife teared up, grateful that someone had noticed her husband’s tireless work.
This reminded me how important it is to thank your liberty activists early and often! Tell them you appreciate them! Show your support by donating to your favorite Shire liberty causes: the Free State Project, the New Hampshire Liberty Alliance, the Get Involved PAC, the Foundation for New Hampshire Independence, and my race.
The sold-out musical was fun. Set to the music of ABBA, the audience clapped and sang along. During the rendition of “The Winner Takes It All,” I could barely keep down my own tears.
“I don’t wanna talk
If it makes you feel sad
And I understand
You’ve come to shake my hand
If it makes you feel bad
Seeing me so tense
But you see
The winner takes it all
The winner takes it all
So the winner takes it all
And the loser has to fall
Throw a dice, cold as ice
Way down here, someone dear
Takes it all, has to fall
It seems plain to me.”
If it’s true that the winner takes it all–I’d quibble and say in a free society, where free markets function properly, voluntary exchange benefits ALL parties–then, let’s make sure we win! Our future as Granite Staters of a free state depends on it!