That odd sentence jumped out from New York Times editorial this morning. What can they be talking about?
Let's see -- this could be about the current civil war complicated by multiple foreign interventions that is underway in Yemen. Or perhaps the editorial is part of the paper's concluding coverage of the 150th anniversary of the U.S. Civil War?
But no -- "the insurrection" to which the paper is referring is the "rage of the Republican establishment" against President Obama. They climb repeatedly to new levels of abuse against him, seeking to undermine his every small step toward policy goals that the majority of us expect from our government: ensuring equal treatment of all of us; seeking an fair and sane immigration policy; orienting our foreign policy away from imperial delusions of national omnipotence and toward peaceful relations with other peoples.
The Times won't say it, but we can. They hate him because he is Black and he is a fully realized citizen of this country. African Americans aren't supposed to be real citizens; they are supposed to be miserable and compliant, examples of pain and disempowerment that remind everyone else to stay in line.
And more, they hate Obama because he represents a better U.S. future. They have hitched themselves to protecting interests and constituencies that fear the evolution of this country and our interconnected world in a more peaceful and equitable direction. He must be the Anti-Christ. They feel justified in making war on him -- after all, an insurrection is a war.
I'm as disappointed by Obama as the next progressive. But let's not allow our urgent need for more change and more justice to obscure that his presidency announces a direction for the country more in tune with our hopes than we can expect from any likely successor.
The current insurrection aims to disempower the majority of the people. Like that last rebellion, it would rather tear down the whole edifice of government rather than give an inch. We can't just watch from the sidelines. Politics is a tiresome, nasty bloodsport but from our neighborhoods, to the states, to the national level, we can't afford not to play.