MISSION, Kan. (AP) — Arguments over mask requirements have turned ugly in recent days as the deadly coronavirus surge engulfs small and medium-size cities that once seemed safely removed from the pandemic.

It comes as the COVID Tracking Project shows that the U.S. topped 3,000 deaths Wednesday in what is a single-day record. A day earlier, public health officials in Boise, Idaho, getting ready to vote on a four-county mask mandate ended the meeting because of fears for their safety amid anti-mask protests.

In South Dakota, the mayor of Rapid City said City Council members were harassed and threatened over a proposed citywide mask mandate that failed this week.

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