NASHUA HAS taken a dark turn and the enemies of free speech and diversity of thought, with the help of Nashua Mayor Donchess, are doing a victory dance on our U.S. Constitution.

The Flag

On Saturday, Oct. 10, defenders of women’s rights, raised a flag at City Hall stating a simple message: “Save Women’s Sports” along with the phrase “Woman = Adult Human Female.” The flag was raised on the Citizen Flagpole, a public forum that is open to Nashua residents to display flags with a variety of views. In the past it has flown the gay pride flag and the Gadsden flag. The save-women’s-sports flag was to fly until Friday.

An application to display this flag was made to the City of Nashua and approved. The flag’s message was conveyed during that process, there was no bait and switch. The permitted flag that contained a simple, powerful message in support of correcting a wrong was raised.

The suppression

Then came an uproar from the perpetually enraged progressive cancel-culture community and the flag was taken down by two city workers last Sunday morning, the day after it had been hoisted.

A Facebook post last Sunday on the Nashua Civic Sounding Board group page by Brenna Connolly, president of the Greater Nashua Young Democrats, thanked Nashua public officials Mayor Jim Donchess and Alderman Jan Schmidt for their role in what is clearly an attack on the 1st Amendment.

Mayor Donchess later confirmed his involvement in his statements that are included in a New Hampshire Union Leader article (bit.ly/3nWc8SQ), “Flak over a flag in the Gate City”. As part of his justification for his free-speech suppression, the mayor is quoted as saying:

“Nashua is a welcoming community, in which we embrace all people and the contributions of all are celebrated and valued.”

One wonders if the mayor understands the irony of that statement given that he devalued and rejected the contributions of those seeking to protect women’s rights simply because they do not agree with his worldview and agenda.

It is cancel culture on ugly display and as Americans our condemnation of this type of free speech suppression should be universal.

Free speech is a core value

There are good, reasonable people who believe that a woman is an adult human female and who also believe that those advocating that men compete as women in sports are putting the safety of our mothers, wives, sisters and daughters at risk. And those people must be allowed to voice their opinion, even in Nashua.

No one has the right to silence speech that does not call for violence or hatred for any group. There is no “hate” in that flag’s message, it makes a statement of fact and a plea for change to protect the innocent. We have a right to say that truth however uncomfortable some are with truth being spoken, even in Nashua.

One of the core values on which this country is founded is attributed to Patrick Henry: “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.” I still believe that incredibly powerful and quintessential American sentiment regarding the individual’s right to speak freely, do you?

Whatever the personal beliefs of Mayor Donchess, they should not matter here. Freedom of speech must be sacrosanct or we are lost as a country.

And of course, actions speak louder than words. I challenge Mayor Donchess to go to City Hall and personally raise that flag again! Feel free to say while doing so: “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.” It’s the American thing to do.

Nashua resident Kevin Scully is a Republican running for state representative in Ward 6.

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