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Texas Matters: Freeze Deaths Undercount, Holy Assault Rifles And Learning From Hitler's Anti-Democracy Moves

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Rev. Sean Moon of the Sanctuary Church and Rod of Iron Ministries
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Rev. Sean Moon of the Sanctuary Church and Rod of Iron Ministries

It was 100 days ago that many of us in Texas were shivering in the dark. The historic winter storm Uri was too cold and lasted too long for natural gas providers to handle. Their well heads and pipelines froze. Electric utilities were cut off from fuel and that’s the main reason why the grid failed. That's why people died.

But how many people died as a direct result of the cold and black out? 100 days later, that question is still being answered. Certainly the state of Texas has it’s official number – 151 dead. But a recent analysis demonstrates that this is an undercount and the actual number of dead is significantly higher.
Zahra Hirji, a science and energy reporter for BuzzFeed news, was part of a team that compiled data and conducted an analysis of the fatalities of the Texas winter storm Uri. They estimate the real number should be about 700.

Church The Holy AR-15

A pro-Trump religious sect known for worshipping with AR-15s and other firearms has found fertile ground in Texas.

The Sanctuary Church also known as the Iron Rod Ministries recently purchased 40-acres in Central Texas and is preparing for what they see as an imminent war against the so called “deep state.”
This is near the town of Thornton, 40 miles from Waco in Limestone County.

Tess Owen is a reporter with Vice News. She is tracking the Sanctuary Church.

The Fall Of Our Democracy: Hitler Style

How fragile is American democracy and how close was it to cracking on Jan. 6, when a pro-Trump mob stormed the capitol to “Stop the Steal?”
It’s impossible to know presently how significant this authoritarian eruption is in American history. Whether it will be a Whiskey Rebellion or a Fort Sumter depends on what happens next.
But historian Benjamin Carter Hett says there are frightening similarities to where we are in America and where Germany was in 1923 – as Adolf Hitler worked to end that democracy.
Benjamin Carter Hett is a professor of history at Hunter College and the City University of New York and the author of several books, including "Burning the Reichstag: An Investigation Into the Third Reich's Enduring Mystery" and "The Death of Democracy: Hitler's Rise to Power and the Downfall of the Weimar Republic." His newest book is "The Nazi Menace: Hitler, Churchill, Roosevelt, Stalin, and the Road to War."

David Martin Davies can be reached at dmdavies@tpr.org and on Twitter at @DavidMartinDavi