Opinion by: Tara Coakley

The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the Litchfield Mirror, LCTV, LCM, the Town of Litchfield or it’s elected officials.

As a parent, resident and taxpayer in Litchfield NH, I vehemently oppose the recent trampling of the Constitution by the NH Legislature and Governor Sununu.

In recent months the Governor and legislature have stripped away women’s right to control their own bodies, and attempted to usurp local control over what is allowed to be taught in classrooms. There is also a provision in the state budget that allows parents that meet the income criteria to access funding to send their child to a private or RELIGIOUS school. Public funding should not be used to finance religious education. It is puzzling to me that the legislature believes that it is ok to prohibit public dollars to fund abortion due to religious objections, yet it is ok to fund religious education. In addition to the problem with spending public money on religious training, vouchers drain resources from public schools which will have a detrimental impact of the education of our children. If people are concerned with education the solution is not to drain the money from the schools, but to invest smartly in the programs and services the schools provide.

The most recent attack on the Constitution is the signing of HB 69 by the governor which prohibits the state or a school district from restricting displaying the motto “In God we trust.” Displaying this in schools and public buildings violates the Establishment Clause in the First Amendment. Sadly, it appears that separation of church and state does not apply when the republicans decide it is inconvenient.

Recent actions in the NH Legislature are sure to be challenged in our courts. My hope is that the courts rectify the situation by applying the laws fairly and justly. I encourage you to reach out to our State Representative and Governor Sununu and tell them that you expect them to do better and to defend the Constitution.