West Ky. Students Voice Opposition To Oliver North Appearance

Jul 16, 2018

A group of high school students in west Kentucky is organizing a protest opposing the upcoming appearance of the National Rifle Association President in Murray.

Oliver North is the featured speaker at a GOP rally jointly hosted by the Calloway and Marshall County Republican parties. 

North was named NRA president in May and is known for his involvement in the Iran-Contra scandal.

A group of 15 to 17-year olds who participated in the local ‘March For Our Lives’ are organizing the protest. Many of them attend Marshall County High School -- where a deadly shooting occurred in January.

Spokesperson Bobbie Foust said many students who survived the shooting feel like North’s appearance is  “rubbing salt in an open wound.”

“This is something that is staying with them..this is something that is haunting them..and they want to make it known that they don’t think Oliver North should be brought in at this time,” Foust said.

16-year-old Cloi Henke said she felt “anxious and nauseous” when she heard about North’s upcoming appearance.

“I felt kind of useless in a way because I was already feeling down about our march; because no one was listening to us when it happened,” Henke said. “When I heard he was coming it just kind of weighed me down a little more thinking that no one was hearing us still. I thought it was disrespectful in a way.”

Lela Free is a 15-year-old sophomore at Marshall County High School. She said she believes North has  “hurt people all around the country” and wants people from across the country to join their protest.

According to a release, many of the students who have voiced their opinions about gun safety and gun control have been harassed in person and on social media.

Foust said Veterans For Peace - a left-leaning group of military veterans - will form a ‘safety line’ for students at the protest.

‘Say No To Oliver North’ will take place outside of Murray State’s Lovett Auditorium on August 3, where North is scheduled to speak at the “Night Before Fancy Farm” GOP rally.