Opponents of government action to require face masks to limit the spread of COVID-19 have raised ferocious resistance, including rallies like this one at Century II in Wichita. By the time Independence Day rolled around, Parsons Mayor Jeff Perez was taking stock of COVID cases in southwest Missouri and northwest Arkansas. The Labette County Commission had voted not to require masks, but Perez and the City Commission staked out something of a middle ground, adopting an ordinance that initially aimed for education and voluntary compliance.