Tennesseans gather at local high school to protest federal vaccine mandate

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ERWIN, Tenn. (WJHL) – Hundreds of people gathered at Unicoi County High School to protest the federal COVID-19 vaccine mandate Saturday.

This follows President Biden’s order for employers with more than one hundred workers to be vaccinated or provide a negative COVID-19 test weekly.

The protest rally was held inside the school gymnasium, but News Channel 11 crews were told they were not allowed inside.

Organizer Justin Muhn said he and friends wanted to hold the rally to bring the community together for a conversation.

“We wanted to get everybody that we could involved, and we thought this would be the best venue,” Muhn said.

Muhn said he’s not against the vaccine but thinks Americans should have the right to choose whether or not they want to get the shot.

Those protesting said they were hoping to send a message to local government officials.

“Stand up for your people, stand up for your constituents, nurses, police officers, firefighters, just blue-collar workers who are being forced to take this vaccine against their will,” Muhn said. “Stand up for us at the state level and at the federal level.”

Johnny Woodard from Chattanooga said he came out to the rally to support American’s freedom.

“I believe in our God given rights to say yes or no,” Woodard said. “I’m just glad that Tennessee is standing up and has things like this that we still have a voice, lot of other states is not showing or demonstrating that they even have a say so anymore.”

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