A large group of individuals appeared to gather at Gov. Chris Sununu's Newfields home on Sunday to protest a statewide mask mandate that took effect this past week.

In photos posted to the Absolute Defiance Facebook page, protestors were pictured without masks in front of Sununu's home with signs that read, "Breathe Free Or Die," "My Body My Choice," and "The Real Virus Is Fear," among other messages that challenged the science behind face coverings and their effectiveness as a combatant against the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Sununu held a press conference Thursday where he announced a statewide ordinance stating that all persons in New Hampshire shall wear a face covering both inside and outside when six feet of distance can not be maintained between parties, a measure that took effect Friday. Some municipalities, including Portsmouth, already had similar mandates in place.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that masks are effective barriers than can help your respiratory droplets, the main transmission method of COVID-19, from reaching others.

Sununu, who was initially hesitant to issue a mandate, is not the only Republican governor to take serious measures as COVID-19 cases across the country spike higher than they have in months. Numerous studies have found that masks, and perhaps even the mandates, reduce the risk of transmission, according to The Washington Post.

Messages sent to the Absolute Defiance Facebook page, which says that its purpose "is to regain our natural rights that are being eroded by various entities," were not returned as of Monday morning.

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