Petition of Redress? Nope. The Legislature Did Away With That Committee

by Rick Olson

“An once of hypocrisy is worth a pound of ambition.” Michael Korda 

N.H. State Senator Martha Fuller-Clark

Last Wednesday, the new leadership in Concord saw fit to forgo the Committee on Redress of Grievances. And they did. 

Enter State Senator Martha Fuller-Clark. She found a “petition of Redress” from twenty black slaves in Portsmouth dating back to 1779.

According to the Concord “Fishwrapper” Monitor, “On Nov. 12, 1779, 20 black slaves in Portsmouth sent a petition to New Hampshire’s General Assembly. Amid the rhetoric and battles of the Revolutionary War, they asked lawmakers to free them and make sure “that the Name of Slave may not more be heard in a Land gloriously contending for the Sweets of Freedom.””

The current legislature saw fit to dispense with the “Redress of Grievances” committee, so the question remains, why revisit this now? Moreover, in the 233 years since the petition, a great much legislation and social change has occurred…Suggesting that Nero Brewster, Pharaoh Rogers, Prince Whipple and the 17 other men who signed the petition did in fact, obtain some measure of closure.

Enter the Senate Jesters

While a very noble effort on her part, none will make the case this advances the lives of Granite Staters. More symbolism over substance on the part of Senator Martha Fuller-Clark. Like the Senate and Legislature don’t have anything substantive to do already?

This ranks right up there with Ted Rokas’ resolution demanding the return of the Elgin Marbles to Greece.  All of it, mere white noise in the macro scheme of legislative affairs.

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