This weekend we celebrate Independence Day. In 1776 the American colonies threw off the yoke of the British Empire. It took six more years of war following that Declaration of Independence to fully secure our freedom. In signing the Declaration of Independence the Founding Fathers ingrained in the American public a strong sentiment of rebellion toward government. This has created a strong resistance to being told what to do.

Today, during the COVID-19 pandemic, we are seeing that resistance playing out in a most unusual way. The major battle being fought today is not over the freedom to go to the beach or bowling or to have a barbecue. American freedom, for many, is read as freedom to not wear a face mask in public.

The correct response to this pandemic has been a moving target from the beginning, and the wearing of masks was an early controversy. Since then, a consensus has been reached that wearing masks in public is a very cheap and effective way to drastically slow the spread.

The pandemic was politicized within days of its recognition as a public health crisis. Every aspect of the response, from bailout funds to whom can be blamed, has become the subject of political posturing. The virus does not care about where you are from or if you support Trump or Biden. This virus will infect anyone and everyone it possibly can. If you are unlucky and are in a high-risk group, or very unlucky and have a severe response, this virus will kill you.

Faced with such a severe and dangerous threat the natural question is “what can I do?” The answers are simple enough and we have heard them ad infinitum. Social distance, wash your hands, avoid large groups, and if you have to go out in public WEAR A MASK. Wearing a mask doesn’t mean you are for the Democrats or against the Republicans. Wearing a mask only means you are for humanity and against the virus.

People cite many reasons for not wearing masks, but “freedom” is not an acceptable one. America fought long and hard for our freedom from England and we continue fighting for our freedoms. Wearing a mask in no way diminishes those freedoms. Wearing a mask is an exercise of the personal responsibility that freedom demands. What we need to remember is that in throwing off the yoke of English rule we placed that yoke squarely on our own shoulders. The yoke is not on the American government, but on every individual. Freedom requires making the right choices to protect ourselves, our families and our communities.

So wear the mask proudly as an American. Wear the mask not because the government told you to but because we are all in this together and it is one of the best weapons we have against the true enemy in this battle.

Sunday, November 29, 2020
Friday, November 27, 2020

One benefit of the recent elections ought to be the long overdue acceptance of a federal grant (i.e., taxpayer money) to explore and expand public charter school options throughout New Hampshire. The repeated rejection of these funds that the state Department of Education has sought for more…

No doubt readers today are still digging their way through either Thanksgiving leftovers and/or the extra-large holiday newspaper we served up earlier this week. The edition has ideas aplenty for the Christmas shopping that lies directly ahead.

Sunday, November 22, 2020

The statewide mask order issued by Gov. Chris Sununu late last week should come as no surprise. Anyone who has paid attention knows Sununu has moved decisively on dealing with COVID-19 when he believes action is warranted. It is one of the main reasons he was just re-elected by such a wide margin.

The staggering amount of taxpayer money that has been spent on the related problems of homelessness, drug abuse and mental illness in New Hampshire is mind-numbing. In his answer to a letter from mayors (including Manchester’s Joyce Craig), Gov. Chris Sununu provides an outline of such expen…

It is good to read that Secretary of State William Gardner will stand for another term. His record for New Hampshire speaks for itself as one of uncompromising service and integrity above partisan politics. Our most recent election process, standing as it does in stark relief to challenges a…

Friday, November 20, 2020
Wednesday, November 18, 2020

It seems ironic that the New Hampshire couple upset with the producers of the North Woods Law TV program for allegedly invading their privacy are in fact bringing notoriety on themselves with their lawsuit. It puts us in mind of the fellow who killed his parents and then begged for the court…

New Hampshire’s Fish and Game Department will have its hands full as the seasons change and the nights get longer. No doubt its officers will be dealing with road kill as deer, in particular, roam about as winter approaches.

Sunday, November 15, 2020

Republican Party hacks across the country were willing enablers of Donald Trump even as his own self-interests did damage to a once-proud Republican philosophy. They did so precisely because they are political hacks first, last, and always.

The Union Leader Santa Fund for the Salvation Army would normally be kicking things off with a thank-you luncheon at about this time of year. That can’t happen because of the coronavirus pandemic, which is also putting an added strain on the families the Santa Fund helps to serve.

Clearly there is a disconnect between the state and the city over the homeless issues in Manchester. The state says its health and welfare people are in direct, daily communication with those in tent encampments. Mayor Joyce Craig and Fire Chief Dan Goonan say they have seen no evidence of this.

Friday, November 13, 2020

Perhaps the fellow whose political party was just “flipped” out of control of New Hampshire governance isn’t the best person to order up a wholesale review of what just happened. He certainly isn’t the one who should be selecting the reviewers.

Manchester’s school superintendent is warning that schools may need to revert to fully “remote learning” from Thanksgiving right through to mid-January. The reason: so many educators will be leaving the state over the holidays that pandemic protocols will demand it. The quarantine period for…

Wednesday, November 11, 2020

We reprint here a presidential proclamation issued on Nov. 11, 1954, after Congress renamed Armistice Day as Veterans Day. It seems particularly fitting that the President at the time, Dwight D. Eisenhower, had 10 years earlier commanded the troops that freed Europe from Hitler.