17:40 GMT17 May 2021
Listen Live
    Get short URL

    Those occupying Oregon’s Malheur National Wildlife Refuge seem to think they are heroic patriots, but Americans are actually pretty upset with them: the occupation is costing the country over $100,000 per day. As tokens of the nation’s unappreciation, the group has been receiving a storm of hate mail -- including dildos and other snarky gifts.

    Harney County Judge Steve Grasty has estimated that the standoff is costing the county “$60,000 to $70,000 a day” for security costs and closed schools. Additionally, federal taxpayers are on the hook for cost accrued by the Bureau of Land Management’s district office in Burns, which employs nearly 120 people, most of whom are now on paid administrative leave. The weekly cost of their salaries is $117,000 per week, or $3,400 per day, Think Progress reported.

    The county is also losing money from tourism, as the refuge is a popular destination for bird watchers and other nature lovers and attracts 119,000 recreational visitors a year. According to a 2013 report from the US Fish and Wildlife Service, these visitors spend around $15 million each year — or $40,000 a day.

    All totaled, the armed occupation is costing Americans $133,400 per day, with no end to the standoff in sight.

    Needless to say, the militia has not been very warmly received.

    Jon Ritzheimer, an anti-Islam activist currently holed up in the federal building, took to Facebook with a video angrily displaying some of what the group has been sent, including a bag of candy penises and what appears to be a double-sided dildo.

    “It’s sad that there are people who would spend this kind of money on this rather than spending it to do good in the world,” Ritzheimer laments in the video. “I’m done living in fear of an oppressing force. I’m going to uphold my oath to the Constitution and sleep great at night knowing that I did everything in my power to ensure what our founding fathers did for us will not be lost.”

    Ritzheimer’s video ends with him dramatically throwing the large pile of mail onto the floor.


    ‘Unhinged’ Anti-Muslim Oregon Militant Ritzheimer Tracked by FBI for Months
    ‘Urgent’: Oath Keepers Warn Oregon Militants to Evacuate Women and Kids
    Cold and Hoping for Snacks: Officials Plan Power Cut to End Oregon Standoff
    Oregon Ranchers at Heart of Armed Takeover Report to Prison
    Media Coverage of Oregon Standoff Sparks Outrage and Ridicule Online
    Standoff, Militia, Jon Ritzheimer, Burns, Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, Oregon
    Community standardsDiscussion