It happened. Again. And this time, it happened awfully close to home. And in fact, for those who live in the Northeast Las Vegas Valley, it did hit home.
It was supposed to be a normal Sunday at the CiCi's Pizza at Nellis & Stewart. Two Metro Police officers just happened to be eating lunch there. Then around 11:30 AM, everything changed.
Metro officers Alyn Beck and Igor Soldo were shot dead execution style. The two shooters then removed the officers' weapons & badges, covered their corpses with the Gadsden Flag (the yellow flag with a coiled snake that's become a "TEA Party" icon in recent years), and moved to a nearby Walmart. They then shot a customer dead near the front of the store. After causing quite the bloody scene at that Walmart, the shooters then turned the guns on themselves.
According to neighbors, the shooters often talked about their racist & anti-government ideology. They actually claimed they wanted to commit "the next Columbine". And they claimed they spent time with Cliven Bundy's crew earlier this year.
Five people are now dead, including the shooters. And once again, we're reminded that gun violence can indeed come too close to home. And once it hits home, tragedy all too often follows.
We've often heard certain Nevada Republicans boast about Governor Brian Sandoval (R-NRA), Senator Dean Heller (R-NRA), and Rep. Joe Heck (R-NRA) being "what stood in the way" of better gun safety laws that could have prevented tragedies like this one. Are they ready to resume this boast today? Are they ready to join the NRA's fight to redefine "shooting"? Are they ready to join the NRA in singing the praises of Open Carry Texas' heat packing and Cliven Bundy's armed madness?
Already, they and other politicians are tweeting out condolences and making other somber gestures. That's what's to be expected. It would just be nice if we didn't have to constantly repeat this cycle, this perpetual "Groundhog Day" of gun violence.
We've said this before, yet we must say this again today: We need more than just words. We need more than just the usual "sympathetic" platitudes. We need more than just the usual 48 hours of somber social media messages followed by the "return to normal".
This hit too close to home. We should all take notice. And not only that, but we should take real action as well. Why must we relive this kind of tragedy yet again?