I must state at the outset that I am a supporter of Obama. I am also against military action in Syria. I have no problem with holding these two thoughts in my head at once.
Unfortunately, most Republicans have painted themselves into such a corner that they no longer seem to have the option of such nuanced thought and behavior.
Let's step back for a moment from the precipice, from the fact of imminent war, and consider from a distance the strange place where we find ourselves.
Besides lower taxes, until recently the overwhelming majority of Republicans stood reliably for two things--imperial militarism and rolling back the clock on Civil Rights.
Ever since Obama was elected, the rampant racism in the Republican party has become overt rather than covert, explicit rather than implicit.
Ever since Bush and Cheney were elected, the imperial militarism espoused by Bush Sr. and the military industrial complex has been taken to a new level--although humiliations in Iraq and Afghanistan have somewhat dampened the enthusiasm for war.
Right now, however, we are facing a moment in history when two well-trod courses of historic behavior by Republicans clash.
They can either support a President who wants to use military force--because they always support a president who wants to use military force.
Or they can go against an African American President--because they always go against an African American President.
And this Republican dilemma places us in a truly new situation. As observers, we can watch and see which odious set of behaviors Republicans choose to abandon.
Will they abandon their racism in order to support their militarism? Or will they abandon their militarism in order to support their racism?
In other words, in order to embrace one evil, Republicans find they must abandon another one.
They have found themselves in a truly Zen moment.
I believe that Progressives, with care, can choose not to be in that same bind.
I hope for peace and I hope for an end to racism. As a Progressive, I continue to support the President for what he does right. I think that military strikes against Syria are wrong. I hope that as Progressives we can be for peace without undermining our opportunity to continue to advance a Progressive agenda.