NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) - Nashville Mayor John Cooper’s “Rule of 8” went into effect on Monday, which means public and private gatherings cannot have more than eight people.

The rule was put in place to prevent super spreader events around Thanksgiving, but that didn’t stop dozens of people who protested the rule downtown at Legislative Plaza.

“People who are concerned about the virus need to stay home and people who want to go to work need to go work,” Pastor Greg Locke said. The rally was composed of several conservative groups speaking out against the Rule of 8.

“I’m going to be over eight,” says retired nurse and participant, Janelle Krantz. “The ruling is not common sense to me.”

Locke was the leader of the Faith and Freedom Rally on Monday afternoon. 

“They’re unenforceable suggestions,” Locke said. “That (Rule of 8) was very, not only unconstitutional, but very unmerciful to what we’ve already had to survive in the last number of months.”

Locke said with the timing close to the holidays, the rule will hurt families and the economy.

“I get that there’s a virus, I get that there’s sickness, but you cannot give up your freedoms for security, "Locke said. 

“We are given the knowledge and with that knowledge we should be able to make our own decision involving this,” Keira Pfefferkorn said.

Churches and houses of worship are exempt from the Rule of 8.

Civil citations will be issued for violations of the Rule of 8, like those who violate the mask mandate.

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