Members of Free State Project advocate gun rights in NH
Title: Members of Free State Project advocate gun rights in NH
Author: Lauren Collins
Publication: New England Cable News
Members of the Free State Project live by the ideals of the founding fathers and encourage others who think the same way to move to New Hampshire. Spokesman Calvin Pratt says, "we think, in the project, New Hampshire best typifies those ideals. They still have a system of government that would be recognizable to our founding fathers." Pratt is a state representative for Goffstown and FSP member who came here six years ago from New Jersey. He does not carry a weapon, but explains that free staters believe, as the founding fathers did, that citizens are responsible for their own security. "That's not a duty that we say, well, it's only a duty for the police, call the police and have them come. It's the duty of every citizen who's willing to do so to do it." William Kostric moved to new Hampshire from Arizona. He is a vigorous advocate of the second amendment right to bear arms. The few times Pratt has met him, he's always visibly carried a gun. As to his decision to bring it to the rally outside the president's town hall on health care, Pratt says free staters pledge non-aggression and non violence "I don't think William would ever start anything, so I was not intimidated by what I saw there." New Hampshire does not require a permit to openly carry a gun. When Kostric was asked by local police to step outside the thousand-foot weapons buffer zone around Portsmouth High School, he did so. "William was only exercising a natural right here in New Hampshire," says Pratt. "Probably it was a little bit insensitive." So why did he do it? Kostric, not surprised by the strong reaction, was pressed on that question on MSNBC's Hardball with Chris Matthews. "Clearly I'm not advocating violence," Kostric said. "Clearly no violence took place today." "Well, then what are you advocating," asked Matthews. "I'm advocating an informed society, an armed society," he responded. That may have been his intent, but instead he seems to have sparked uproar about the responsibilities and the manners that come with gun rights.