New Hampshire City Votes to Reinstall Ten Commandments Monument Toppled by Vandal

ten-commandmentsSOMERSWORTH, N.H. — The city council of one New Hampshire municipality has voted to reinstall a Ten Commandments monument next to city hall after it was toppled last month by an unknown vandal.

The Somersworth City Council voted 7-2 on Tuesday to restore the display to its previous position, and add flagpoles and historic markers to help “neutralize” its presence.

“The city manager and I have worked out a plan which would further neutralize the monument thus ensuring that it would meet all future tests,” Mayor Dana Hilliard said, according to Foster’s Daily Democrat. “The plan includes … a historical sign outlining the history, role and purpose of the monument … and two flag poles.”

The monument had been gifted to the city by the Fraternal Order of Eagles in 1958 and has been displayed on a traffic island adjacent to city hall ever since.

Last month, the display was toppled by a vandal who has yet to be identified.

“This may just be somebody’s idea of savage amusement,” police remarked on Aug. 12. “If anyone has any information it would be very helpful to our investigation.”

“It is my intention to honor the history of the monument, the sensitivity surrounding the monument and its role in history but at the same time balance the question of constitutionality surrounding it,” Hilliard said last month after the Decalogue had been tipped over.

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While the majority of council members supported the monument’s restoration this week, members Jessica Paradis and Jennifer Soldati opined that the city’s plan to add a marker and flags actually made an even stronger suggestion of government endorsement.

“Democracy is not about majority rule. It is the rights of the minority being protected against the tyranny of the majority,” Soldati said. “I understand the sentimentality; I get it. But I am a staunch believer in our constitution and I do believe that we are in violation.”

As previously reported, the 2005 U.S. Supreme Court decision of Van Orden v. Perry, which upheld a Ten Commandments monument at the Texas state capitol, noted that Decalogue displays are “common throughout America.”

“We need only look within our own courtroom,” the justices wrote. “Since 1935, Moses has stood, holding two tablets that reveal portions of the Ten Commandments written in Hebrew, among other lawgivers in the south frieze.”

“Similar acknowledgments can be seen throughout a visitor’s tour of our nation’s capital. For example, a large statue of Moses holding the Ten Commandments, alongside a statue of the Apostle Paul, has overlooked the rotunda of the Library of Congress’ Jefferson Building since 1897,” the decision continued. “And the Jefferson Building’s Great Reading Room contains a sculpture of a woman beside the Ten Commandments with a quote above her from the Old Testament (Micah 6:8).”

“A medallion with two tablets depicting the Ten Commandments decorates the floor of the national archives,” the court outlined. “Inside the Department of Justice, a statue entitled “The Spirit of Law” has two tablets representing the Ten Commandments lying at its feet. In front of the Ronald Reagan Building is another sculpture that includes a depiction of the Ten Commandments.”

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  • Reason2012

    2 Chronicles 7:14 “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.”

    James 5:16 “.. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.”

  • TheBottomline4This

    The coward(s) who vandalized the monument are fools.
    I’m sure if a monument they agree with was vandalized we would hear them complaining and demanding prosecution.
    So to be fair, I hope they are caught and punished to the full extent of the law.

    Glad it is being reinstalled 🙂

  • james blue

    Adding flags doesn’t make it neutral, I have to agree with members Jessica Paradis and Jennifer Soldati on this that adding flags makes it less neutral. Even if it isn’t neutral vandalism is not justified.

    The upkeep, including repairs, of such monuments should be entirely paid for by private funds, not taxpayer.

  • King Arthropod Pendragonfly

    This monument will just be removed legally, and the city will have to finance a losing lawsuit.

  • Grace Kim Kwon

    Good! America has no lawfulness apart from the Ten Commandments. All Americans should remember the Law-Giver God and His Word and the Christian creators of USA forever.

    • Stormwatch

      “As the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion…” – Treaty of Tripoli, unanimously ratified by the US Senate and signed into law by President John Adams in 1797.

      • Grace Kim Kwon

        US Declaration of Independence says America submits to the God of the Holy Bible alone, and the first US President said that America can be governed properly only by Christianity. John Adams meant that America is not affiliated with any specific denomination. USA has no lawfulness whatsoever apart from Christianity. White Americans would have been a bunch of illiterate women-oppressing savages like the rest of mankind if they had no Christian Church. USA got every good stuff directly transferred from the Christian Britain; Magna Carta is another Christian invention. Today’s USA is not being appreciated by the world because unbelieving Americans deny having gotten everything noble and excellent from the Holy Bible and from the Christian Britain. Ingratitude returns to ungrateful parasites. Cain’s descendants do not retain history and get wiped out at the end. You must repent of your sins to get saved. Read John ch.3. America belongs to God.

        • craiggnt

          Obviously you have no clue that the Declaration of Independence IS NOT a law document. It doesn’t matter what it says, its words mean nothing in US Constitutional law. It doesn’t matter what a president says,his words are also not Constitutional law.If the Constitution is so Christian,why doesn’t it mention one word about Christianity,God or Jesus short of writing the date in the style of writing at that time? How come of the 613 God written laws in the Bible do all but two,stealing and killing violate the US Constitution? Seriously ,the Christian church not oppressing women? So biblical marriage is nothing more than slavery for the bride.Women are made to sleep in the toolshed when they are menstruating.Women are not allowed to go out alone in public and must cover their heads. A man can kill his wife if she talks back to him.Tries to teach him,looks at the alter………….Tell us how many female bishops the church has had? How about Christian churches where the men are separated from the men? Christianity is ignorance

          • Grace Kim Kwon

            Mayflower Compact, Declaration of Independence, and the national anthem are the heart of America. US Constitution protects religion and a clear conscience but no one’s abnormal immoral behaviour. You guys got weird this century by having a full stomach on a planet of starving mankind. Christianity alone taught mankind including Americans to be civilized; that’s why the Christian-less USA only promotes blasphemy and destructive sexual immorality. Female bishops are not of Christianity; they are New Agers. Learn religions correctly.