Ammon Bundy
Ammon Bundy Justin Sullivan / Getty News

Like a particularly stubborn case of herpes, Malheur militia member/anti-government zealot Ammon Bundy is back—and this time he's openly defying the order of Idaho's governor by holding public meetings during the COVID-19 crisis.

According to the Idaho Press, Bundy—who became infamous after staging an almost six-week takeover of Oregon's Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in 2016, and in a wild miscarriage of justice was later acquitted by a jury—is now protesting Idaho Governor Brad Little's statewide order to stay at home for 21 days in order to slow the coronavirus curve and save thousands of lives. Bundy reportedly held a public meeting in Emmett, Idaho, where more than a dozen people were in attendance. The militia member told the Idaho Press that they discussed "whether our rights can be taken away by an order from a governor or an agency, and if they can be, what good are our rights?"

In a video of the public meeting, Bundy told participants, "The right to travel is not theirs to take. The right to assemble is not theirs to take. The right to worship how and where and when we want is not theirs to take. That's the issue here."

Bundy has been downplaying the dangerous, deadly nature of COVID-19, and told those in attendance that the coronavirus is "a relatively low-risk situation," despite expert predictions that as many as 100,000 to 200,000 people could die across the nation, adding that "if nine out of 10 people were dying, it still does not justify the taking of rights."

Unsurprisingly, Bundy says he's very willing to use weapons in order to "defend" the rights of businesses who choose to continue unsafely operating in the face of this deadly pandemic.

"If you decided to keep your business open, then I will be there," he told attendees. "And I will bring as many people as I can, and we will form a legal defense for you, we will form an active political defense for you, and we will also, if necessary, provide a physical defense for you so that you can continue in your rights. And that's what I believe needs to happen."

In continued defiance of the state order, Bundy is planning another public meeting this week.