No shots have been fired. No blood has been spilled. But a second Civil War is underway with a new breed of angry white rebels taking up where the Old Confederacy left off.
The Tea Party soldiers of this New Confederacy have seized control of the Republican Party and flexed their muscles in trying to shut down the U.S. government. The same anti-union spirit that flourished in 1860 drives the Tea Party movement, which sees itself as resisting the tyranny of an illegitimate Northern president. In 1860, it was the end of states’ rights that the rebel states feared; today, it’s universal access to health care.
Let’s call this hysteria what it is — racism. It is no coincidence that 10 of the 11 states of the Old South have refused to expand Medicaid access under the Affordable Care Act; as a result of that decision, the majority of the people who will suffer are poor, black and working class.
Welcome to the new normal. These rebels without a cause see President Obama as a Pied Piper of check-seekers, out to strip Tea Party whites of their remaining wealth and privilege and redistribute the spoils to undeserving dark-skinned people. Aren’t you glad you don’t think this way?