TUPELO, Miss (WTVA) --Following the changing of the state's flag, a group met at Veteran's Memorial Park in Tupelo on Tuesday evening to discuss what they say is leaders abusing their power.
Several people said they weren't necessarily angry that the flag was changed, they were angry over how it was done.
“This is much more than being about a state flag. This is about losing your rights as an American citizen," said meeting organizer Lauren Smith. Smith feels her homeland is in danger.
“This is about defending those rights in a democracy that so many people have already fought and died for, and here we are having to fight for it again on our very own soil," Smith said.
She says people are fed up with having those in power take away their voices. According to protester Joyce Blasingame said she thinks our democracy is in trouble.
“It’s just like watching a loved one with Alzheimer’s deteriorating every day," Blasingame said. She said she actually watched that happen to someone she loved.
She says this isn't just about changing a flag.
“They should have let the people decide, not decide for us, and if they decide that for us, what’s next?”
Several people voiced their opinions at the meeting, something they feel they are losing their ability to do.
According to Smith, even though it comes under so much criticism, she says patriotism is the heart of what they are pushing for.
“It is simply taking pride in your state and your country, and having the ability to stand up and voice your opinions," Smith said.
Smith said this meeting served as an opportunity for people who attended to discuss what they will do during a protest they are planning to have on July 18. The group plan is planning to hold that protest at Veterans Memorial Park.