Rally for freedom from COVID-19 restrictions held on Iron Range

Emily Ness
Updated: August 08, 2020 06:21 PM

A rally was held on the Iron Range Friday night by a group who said they were fed up with COVID-19 restrictions.


“We want to see our country stand for more freedom,” Wanda Lerol, an Iron Range resident said.

“We love America and it’s not America anymore. It’s affecting everybody,” Jody Blake, another Iron Range resident said.

Lerol and Blake expressed concerns about businesses going under, leaving loved ones without jobs.

“I care too much about my children and my grandchildren and our country,” Blake said. “It’s time to speak up.”

Lerol and Blake also expressed concerns about visiting restrictions preventing them from seeing loved ones.

“My father is in a nursing home and I’m seeing that too where people can’t go visit their loved ones,” Blake said.

Lisa Westby, another participant in the rally said she believed wearing a mask should be voluntary, rather than mandatory.

“I’m a constitutionalist. I believe we have the right to move about without having the government restricting that,” Westby said. “I do wear a mask, but if somebody else chooses not to, they have that individual freedom not to.”

Others at the rally said they wanted to be able to exercise their right to assemble and to show support for law enforcement, the military and President Donald Trump.

“I am all for safety and preventing the spread, but when it’s infringing on our constitutional rights, I think that’s when you really need to step up and say something,” Noah Gabler said.

There were a few counter protestors at the rally who said they believed in following current restrictions to potentially save lives.

“I believe in wearing a mask and most of these people don’t,” Daunte Gooden said. “I feel that whatever can save a person and concerns someone’s health, we should all support it.”

Participants at the rally said they hoped to host another rally again soon, while counter protestors said they would continue to counter protest.

The rally was held on the overpass of 169 and Highway 53.


Emily Ness

Copyright 2020 WDIO-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved


St. Louis Co. officials: Rise in cases not related to new test site

Bayfield Co. authorities release name of woman killed in crash

Minnesota COVID-19 Update Friday

Accident closed portion of Midway Road Friday morning

Cromwell woman dies in crash near Brookston

The Islander: Coming of Age in the Apostle Islands