A mere two months after another TX prosecutor from the same jurisdiction had been shot dead, a district attorney for Kaufman County, TX (an area outside of Dallas) and his wife were shot dead in an apparent assassination. Due to the first murder, prosecutor Mike McCelland had taken a number of precautions to protect himself, including carrying a firearm, but apparently that did not prevent his murder or that of his wife, Cynthia - and there are no reports of there having been any exchange of gunfire, so it is unlikely he even had a chance to defend himself. The killings have been linked to white supremacist criminal organization and prison gang the Aryan Brotherhood, which had seen a number of its members recently indicted - an organization with intimate ties to gun and militia cultures throughout the United States.
There are two aspects of this story that bear highlighting:
1. McClelland was a trained former soldier who no doubt had the skills to use a firearm quickly and effectively, but that apparently had no impact whatsoever on the ability of his and his wife's murderer to get to them. The claims of the gun lobby that being armed is an effective deterrent or defense against murder are by now a laughable, sick joke discredited by a long and growing line of bodies, including those of bystanders shot in crossfire, as well as many people with in-depth firearms training. Now that one of the victims is a former soldier and Texas prosecutor acutely aware of a present danger, and surrounded by a community of similarly-armed people, the final nail has been hammered into the coffin of NRA Big Lies.
2. The fact that a white supremacist organized crime organization is so powerful and brazen in Texas, while it fits the Lone Star state's culture of violence and hate, still somehow manages to be shocking. Apparently the pervasive gun culture in the state has done nothing more than create terrorist groups who can murder public officials with impunity, and not one of the millions of firearms in the state stopped one or a handful of assailants from executing a prosecutor, and then two months later doing it again along with the second victim's wife in their own home.
This is what fascism looks like: A state that murders and imprisons people by the bushel (many of them innocent) out of sheer sadism, but can't and/or won't protect even its own prosecutors from the violence of murderous white supremacist terrorists. In fact, they won't even call it terrorism because the suspected perpetrators are part of the same extended political culture of racist, lawless, anti-government white conservative gun nuttery as the Republicans who control the state with an iron fist.
Apparently the Aryan Brotherhood has decided to exercise a "2nd Amendment solution" as the NRA routinely suggests, and its victim's own attempt to do so proved fruitless against superior firepower, superior malice, and the inherent advantage of the attack. Congratulations, Texas - you have now gone where only Sicily and Russia in all of Western civilization have gone in modern times: A state where public officials can be murdered with impunity. The difference is, Sicilians and Russians aren't proud of it.
3:22 PM PT: According to a Huffington Post report, the assassinations may be linked to another that occurred in Colorado two weeks ago by another suspected white supremacist who later died in a shootout with police in the same region of Texas.
3:29 PM PT: A quick perusal of media coverage of the murders doesn't find the word "terrorism" anywhere, and Texas media seem to be downplaying the fact that McClelland was armed.
4:11 PM PT: A number of sources are reporting that an assault rifle was used in the assassination.
5:33 PM PT: A comment below, attributed to a previous diary by another Kossack, makes a brilliant observation: "A gun will not protect you from bullets." Indeed, it seems gun anarchy is as stupid and insane a solution to criminals having guns than arming yourself with vials of smallpox would be if criminals had biological weapons.
5:45 PM PT: Remember when Republicans were outraged about the Homeland Security Department investigating right-wing domestic terrorism, and had the report suppressed? Many of the political leaders involved in the outcry were Texas Republicans. Now we see more of the fruits of their politics.
5:51 PM PT: As far as I can find, Texas - gun capital of the United States - is now the only state in US history to have had two prosecutors assassinated within months of each other.