Freemont Republican House Rep Dan Itse responds to previous letters and editorials from the Union Leader and Chuck Douglas–in the Union Leader–regarding the Honor Your Oath Rally and the persistent effort by them and others to insist that this was just another gun rally whose premis is flawed.
Rep Itse does a fine job of ‘Standing his ground’ on the true purpose of Honor your Oath, but still addresses the constitutional matter of HB135 and its goal to deny free people the right to self defense.
In 1982, the people adopted Part 1, Article 2-a of the New Hampshire Constitution, which strengthens and makes explicit the people’s right to defend their life, liberty and property with arms. In 2005, the Supreme Court of the United State, in Castle Rock v. Gonzalas, recognized that the police have no duty to protect any person against an assault. Specifically, absent a statute requiring that person be protected, and the funding to carry that statute into practice the police could not be required to protect a person from assault.
Part 1, Article 3 states that the Legislature is required to recognize that the failure to provide a protection promised in order to secure a surrender of a right makes the surrender void. Therefore, the Legislature must also recognize that a proposal to require a surrender of rights based upon a protection that cannot be provided for any reasonable cost, must be unconstitutional. This is especially true when the right to be surrendered is explicitly recognized.
Knowing that the police can never protect every person from assault all the time, the Legislature has no power to require any person to surrender their right of self-defense. While giving rhetorical lip service to “stand your ground,” this paper’s editorial and column writers undermine the very rights that justify it.