HOLLY RIDGE, N.C. (WNCT) – People held a protest Monday morning in Holly Ridge against decisions made by local and state leaders to close the economy.
One of those protestors included Nathan Carter. He believes Governor Cooper’s executive orders for the pandemic are unconstitutional.
“We’re not happy. We want to see our country get back to some sense of normalcy,” said Carter.
The business owner reopened his barber shop on Friday, after two months of closing. He joined protestors at Holly Ridge Town Hall to support other local businesses.
“I feel grateful to be able to be open, but I’m also disheartened for the people who aren’t able to,” said Carter.
Nick’s Black Sheep Tavern is one of many businesses that remain closed under the Governor’s revised phase two.
“Opinions are good things. Governor Cooper has his own opinion but when he uses his opinion that affects my right, then we got a problem,” said Robert Nichols, the owner of Nick’s Black Sheep Tavern.
He believes he can continue to run his business in a safe and healthy environment.
“I am capable of protecting my customers, protecting my community, protecting my employees much better than a big box like Walmart is,” said Nichols.
Dennis Burgard has been part of Reopen N.C. protests at the capitol. He and other protestors want the state to get back to work.
“My main message is we are free people, because of the constitution that formed this country and because of the rights God gave us,” said Burgard.
Protestors say the main reason for the event is to support local businesses and stand up for their rights. Many veterans among the demonstrators say the state is trying to take freedoms they fought to secure.
All of them agree measures for big cities shouldn’t apply to small towns like Holly Ridge.
“What’s good for Charlotte N.C. or N.Y.C is not good for Onslow County,” said Nichols.
The peaceful protest moved to the road by the town hall with banners and signs for passing drivers to see. The signs read messages like their jobs are essential, it’s time to get back to work, and it’s time to reopen North Carolina.