Norman mother wants school "buffer zones" to keep protesters at bay
When Valarie Lambert's daughter told her what she had to see while walking to Norman High School last week, she didn't understand how that could be allowed so close to a school.
Lambert says they were images, being held by an anti-abortion group, that made her sick to her stomach.
"You guys said it best when you said, 'these images are so graphic, that we can't show you on television'. That was very profound to me because, you can't show them on television, but yet my daughter has to walk past them every day," Lambert said.
"Yes, you have the right to do this. You don't have the right to block my kid's way to school," Lambert said.
But she's not stopping at the local level. Lamber wants legislation that keeps protesters at least 25 feet away from schools. She reached out to several lawmakers, including Representative Emily Virgin.
Virgin says she thinks there's a way to protect a group's first amendment rights, while protecting students.
"Just move the group back a little bit. You can still see them, you can still hear them, but they're not actually blocking the entrance," Virgin said.
Virgin said she wouldn't support a measure that limits rights, but says the law does support specific restrictions.
"The Supreme Court has consistently upheld what they call time, place and manner restrictions, even when you're on public property," Virgin said.
The anti-abortion group was legally assembled, but students had to walk by them to the front entrance of the school.
Lambert says her story is a lesson to students and parents about how to create real chance through the democratic process.
"E-mail your local representatives, your state reps, your senators," she said.