Amid violent rallies, two Wimberley teens organize peaceful protest

Hays

WIMBERLEY, Texas (KXAN) — A Hays County protest over the weekend remained calm with more than 200 people.

In a town of just over 3,000 people, two Wimberley teenagers rallied about 250 of their neighbors on Sunday.

“We really wanted to go to the protests in Austin, but my parents weren’t really down with that just because of the violence, the things going on,” says organizer Jasmine Racine Belleau.

Belleau, 17, and Isabella Perez, 16, sought to create a different demonstration at home.

“All we wanted to do was a peaceful protest,” Perez says.

Jasmine Racine Belleau (left) and Isabella Perez (right) organized Sunday’s rally. (Photo courtesy: Claudia Perez)

They formed the plan in less than 24 hours — with some tension brewing online.

“There were a few people on Facebook that were really negative and it was a little scary because they did say they were going to bring guns and stuff,” Perez says.

But attendee Marissa Fehler says the hecklers and counter-protesters were minimal, with no violence.

“With all the talk about the second amendment folks coming, I didn’t see a single person out there with a gun, no one approached us or anything,” Fehler says.

While protests in bigger cities may have garnered more attention, Fehler says she’s glad to see all the conversation in Wimberley.

“Seeing both sides of Wimberley come out powerfully,” she says.

The teens say they now hope to continue that conversation monthly.

“There’s multiple different ways on how to start a movement or even if they’re for the same cause, they can be done differently,” Belleau says.

There was also a protest held on Friday in front of the Hays County Courthouse in San Marcos. A Hays County official says that also remained peaceful.

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