Defiant Legislators Remove Masks, Assert Freedom

The 400-member New Hampshire General Court (house of representatives) met this week in the University of New Hampshire sports arena. “Freedom” seats were set aside for members who refused to wear face coverings. Source: InDepthNH.org | Paula Tracy photo [Fair Use]

In the Live Free Or Die State, dozens of state reps openly displayed their choice to live free – of face coverings

InDepthNH.org, DURHAM – The strange end of the 2020 legislative session came Tuesday with most members wearing face coverings and shields on the floor of an ice arena at the University of New Hampshire with some following strict rules for social distancing.

And then there were the “Freedom” seats in another area far from their peers where members of the House sat who refused to wear masks or to socially distance for reasons of liberty.

About 35 Republicans sat in an area with signs reading “Welcome to the Freedom Seats.”

New Hampshire’s highway signage welcomes visitors with celebrating the motto: Life Free or Die. | CREDIT NHPR FILE PHOTO

Rep. Tim Lang, R-Sanbornton, wearing a Hawaiian shirt with a face mask in his pocket, said he decided to sit among the “Freedom” seats to express his support for “individual choice.”

In the House calendar for the last day of the second year of the 166th General Court, the people who chose to sit in those seats were labeled “non-compliant” of medically recommended protocols.

Among the bleacher seats were about 10 members of the House who for medical reasons could not wear masks.

There was more of a mood of resignation in the arena like it was already over Tuesday, and a look to fall re-elections for many as all House seats are up for grabs.

Members were asked to stay in their seats, with the exception of when speaking … Read more.