A new Civil War is taking place in America. No single shot has been fired but a Civil War is taking place nevertheless.
Our country began divided, divided over the institution of slavery. If not for the Connecticut Compromise and The Three-Fifths Compromise, it is doubtful that the Constitution would have ever been ratified. Just a brief reminder of what those two compromises were about: The Connecticut Compromise came about as a result of the controversy regarding state sovereignty, and the Three-Fifth’s compromise allowed for more Southern representation by counting slaves as three-fifths of a person.
Today Southern States, in particular states of the Deep South, fight to maintain their view of what a civil society should look like. In an ever growing national movement we hear about how each state is sovereign and how federal government violates State’s Rights. Elderidge Gerry said early on that our nation was never 13 independent states. It is sad and ironic that things have not changed in the minds and hearts of many white southerners. It is as if they have never accepted the fact that the South lost the Civil War, and that we are not a bunch of sovereign states but one nation. The old notion that states have the power to nullify federal law is back in vogue.
Over one hundred and fifty years ago, Abraham Lincoln gave his House Divided Speech. The speech spoke to the issue of slavery and how we as a nation were so divided over that issue. Lincoln was eloquent, when he spoke the truth by saying that a House Divided against itself can not stand. Those powerful words are just as true today as they were when he gave that speech in 1858.
Today, we are also a nation divided not by physical chains but we are bound by chains that enslave us. We are chained to a servitude of poverty and a lack of social mobility. The Middle Class is barely getting by. We are chained to a culture of hate and fear. Fear of the power of women, fear of the upward mobility of blacks, fear of gays and a fear of immigrants. If only we believed and knew in our heart of hearts that what FDR said about fear was true. He said that, the only fear that we have is fear itself. But fear is used to keep control.
What we are witnessing is the attempt to control people of color and women.
In an unholy alliance with Wall Street, we can see the results of economic slavery. By destroying unions and having right to work states, workers have no power to negotiate and are therefore powerless. Like the Southern aristocracy of old, economic power resides in the hands of the few, while the power of the middle class is diminishing.
White Anglo Saxon Protestant men are so brazen now they are no longer they no fear keeping their beliefs secret. They no longer feel that is necessary to hide behind white sheets. They have gone mainstream.
The Koch Brothers, are no different than their John Birch father. The only difference is that they have amassed such a fortune that they think that they can buy what they could not win by law. They seek to preserve white power to the detriment of the rest of us. The Koch brothers would be our new masters.
The FOX News Network pretends to be a news channel but they are the media purveyors of this attempt to return to the 19th Century. In case you have forgotten the 19th Century was a time when women had no rights and people of color were subjugated and treated as less than human.
You hear the echoes of the past when Fox has a discussion on how bad it is for women to be the primary breadwinners. Unbelievably, these men claimed that women should know their place. To many men, a women’s place means that women should be subservient to men
The echoes have become a crescendo. A loud vocal and well funded effort to deny women their rights and to control them is underway. It is all about control.
Yes, the Republican Party, has women who are members of Congress. Who knows what the individual rationale is for these women to accept being second class citizens?
There is a war on women and their rights. Republicans continue to fight against women getting paid the same as men for the same job. Republicans continue to want to victimize women when it comes to rape. No matter how men want to frame it, rape is a crime, and a crime of violence.
Republicans claim to be about less government interference and they shout the word Liberty from the highest mountain tops. But they seek to deny women their own freedom and liberty over their own bodies, when it comes to women’s health issues. If a women gets pregnant as a result of a rape or incest, they insist on controlling what a woman wants to do. They want to force a woman to have the child. They insist on choosing the life of the fetus over the life of the woman when a pregnancy would put a woman’s life in danger. Some would even deny a woman the right to have contraception. Well, let them pay for the costs of overpopulation. It is as if they want a woman to be barefoot and pregnant. Oh, I forgot, they are barefoot and pregnant in the South. Teen pregnancies are at their highest in the Old South.
Republicans use religion as a hammer over the head of women’s rights. Religious tyranny whether it comes from Christians or Muslims is still tyranny. A person’s religious beliefs should never be forced upon another person.
Southern politicians have an undue influence over the Republican Party. The party of Lincoln has evolved into the party of the old Confederacy. We even hear that fearful word secession used. Instead of enhancing the rights of citizens the Grand Old Party has taken to taking away voting rights, and have increasingly used gerrymandering to increase their chances of victory rather than increasing liberty.
Some Democrats have even mentioned a regret, the regret being that the South was not allowed to secede. Through the billions of dollars in campaign contributions the goal of the Antebellum South is still at play. The goal being that they want to be left alone, alone to have each state have the power to have the type of government that they wish to have and the type of society that the Old South wants to have and keep. The victory that the South sought on the battlefield so long ago may very well be possible through the efforts of ALEC, the Federalist Society, the American Heritage foundation and Americans for Progress.
The truth is that the our country can not survive a house divided. We are finding out that we continually have to fight over and over again to maintain the rights that we cherish. Either we are for equal rights or we are for State’s Rights. Before the Civil War we were a nation of states and after we became a nation of Americans. We are not red states or blue states. What is your choice my fellow Americans? Are we to be a nation with certain unalienable rights or are we a country where property are more important than equal rights. The last battle of the Civil War may very well be upon us.