Photos and article by Mary Alice Murphy

At Gough Park in Silver City on Saturday, Aug. 28, at least 100 people showed up and heard people speak and waved signs and American Flags in protest against Covid-19 mandates.

Sami Morales organized the event and spoke to the group, as well as introducing other speakers.

Silver City Calvary Chapel Pastor Joseph Gros gave the beginning prayer.

Louie Sanchez, New Mexico gubernatorial candidate, spoke strongly: "We must keep our liberties strong. Government cannot take away our liberties unless we give them away. We have to stand together, or we will kneel. I kneel only for God."

Anastasia "Anise" Golden Morper is running for New Mexico lieutenant governor. "I will fight for our Constitution and our rights. We need to quadruple the funds for our boots on the ground, our law enforcement. "

Sheriff Glenn Hamilton of Sierra County spoke on behalf of gubernatorial candidate Rebecca Dow and for the state Sheriff's organization. "During the lockdown, I deputized an entire church, so that they could keep attending services. Your sheriff has to stand up. We sheriffs don't answer to the governor or the county commission. We answer to you. The New Mexico Constitution gives every person in the state the right to self-governance."

He said he believes that the reason for the outbreak of Covid in the El Paso sector of the Border Patrol is due to the illegals pouring into the country. "More than 240,000 were stopped in July of this year. There are likely as many getaways. They are responsible for the spread of Covid-19."

Hamilton advocated for everyone present and all voters to elect constitutionally sound representatives and governor.

A woman, whose name was not clear, spoke on behalf of New Mexico parents against Covid mandates. "We need to fight for the rights of our children. We need no mandates on masks, because bacteria remain trapped in the masks. We must fight for our medical freedom."

Readers can find out more information on the Facebook page unmasknmkids.

Dr. Gregory Koury, a family physician, who has been practicing medicine for 32 years said: "I won't tell you to get the shot or wear masks. There are no studies that prove that masks work." He suggested reading Alex Berenson, which Koury said is an easy read.

"It's disturbing to me that hospital staff are being bullied to get vaccinated," Koury said. "I have hospital privileges and have worked there for years. If you hear I've lost my privileges, please stand up for me."

He said he has been treating Covid patients since the virus began to spread last year. "I lost one patient. Since the shots have been given, I have four patients who have been hurt by them, including two teens who are permanently damaged."

Koury asked people to read the patient bill of rights, put out by the National Institute of Health. [Editor's Note: It can be read here: https://clinicalcenter.nih.gov/participate/patientinfo/legal/bill_of_rights.html ]

"No one can ask their staff if they got the shot," Koury said. "It is illegal. The government has thrown the Patient Bill of Rights out the window. I'm speaking up. If I'm willing to throw out my practice, you, too, should speak out. I took the Hippocratic oath when I became a physician." [Editor's Note: It can be read here in the classical version and the modern version: https://doctors.practo.com/the-hippocratic-oath-the-original-and-revised-version/ The last line reads: "May I always act so as to preserve the finest traditions of my calling and may I long experience the joy of healing those who seek my help.]

He also noted about those who receive medical exemptions from the vaccine, "It's no one's business what your exemption is."

Koury said he was prescribing hydroxychloroquine for his patients with Covid- 19, "but no corporate pharmacy was willing to fill the prescription."

A man in the audience shouted out: "You can buy it in Mexico."

Koury warned: "They will give you the vaccine, whether you want it or not, at the hospital if you have not had it and are going in for surgery."

A registered nurse at Gila Regional Medical Center said that staff that are not vaccinated would know this past week whether they still had jobs. [Editor's Note: According to what Interim CEO Scott Manis said at the recent GRMC governing board meeting, the hospital will not be laying off anyone that is not vaccinated, but they will be put on PRN —pro re nata in Latin, which means basically as needed— status, which would impact their salaries and benefits.]

"We weren't afraid to treat Covid," the nurse said. "We went in with protective gear and treated everyone that came into the hospital. When we became nurses, we vowed to take care of our patients. This mandate is outrageous. We have gone into and will go into homes, the hospital and clinics, and we take care of our patients."

A teacher, Jeff Gephart, was passionately against masks and not doing in-school teaching. "Our kids are being told to fall into line with the mandates."

Silver City Town Councilor José Ray said: "We have the right to say No."

Pastor Trent Petty ended the speeches with prayer and said: "The supreme law of the land is the U.S. Constitution."

Morales said at the very end: "We are here as Americans. We must continue fighting for our rights. We are Patriots Taking Back New Mexico."