The traditional media catches up to the truth:
During the 2008 campaign, questions about John McCain’s birth in the Panama Canal Zone on a U.S. military base prompted some to ask whether McCain was eligible to be president, since the Constitution stipulates that anyone not born in the United States is not eligible to be president.
Amid a flurry of news reports, McCain’s own campaign announced in February 2008 that it was conducting an investigation. When a bipartisan pair of lawyers announced the following month that McCain was indeed eligible, the issue virtually died–apart from a Senate resolution that pretty much laid the question to rest by attesting to the facts surrounding McCain’s birth and citizenship.
But the winner of the 2008 election, Barack Obama, has faced a relentless campaign questioning his U.S. citizenship–and thereby the legitimacy of his presidency–that has disregarded the facts.
Questions regarding Obama’s birth certificate have persisted for more than two years, as the president noted Wednesday at a press conference announcing the release of his long-form birth certificate. A vast array of evidence attests to Obama’s citizenship–including a certificate of live birth, signed affidavits from people who viewed Obama’s long-form birth certificate, confirmation by Hawaiian officials, and independent investigations by news outlets. Nevertheless, “this thing just keeps going” as Obama said this morning. Even after the White House released the long-form certificate of Obama’s birth, birther leader Orly Taitz—who has filed unsuccessful lawsuits seeking to obtain access to Obama’s birth certificate—sought to cast doubt on the document’s authenticity, suggesting that in 1961, Hawaiian officials would have classified Obama as “Negro” rather than using designation “African,” which suggests, in her view, a more contemporary concern for “political correctness.”
So what’s fueling the dogged questioning of Obama’s origins? Many critics of the birther movement say its core tenets–and its stubborn resistance to evidence disproving those beliefs–can be traced to racial hostilities. The fundamental birtherist conviction, these critics say, is that an African-American can’t have legitimately won the presidency–and that his elevation to power therefore has to be the result of an elaborate subterfuge.
Birthers emphatically deny such criticism. But it’s difficult to apprehend the ongoing resistance to proof of Obama’s citizenship without crediting racial fear as a significant factor. At first, after all, many adherents of birtherism argued that the administration fueled speculation by failing to release the long-form version of Obama’s birth certificate, but now that this version has been released to the public, the call continues to go out for other kinds of information about Obama’s past to be released–a level of scrutiny that neither McCain nor Obama’s 43 predecessors in the Oval Office were expected to face.
Trump, who has railed against Obama as he floats himself as a presidential contender, on Wednesday at a press conference in New Hampshire called for Obama to release his academic transcripts:
The word is, according to what I’ve read, that he was a terrible student when he went to Occidental. He then gets to Columbia. He then gets to Harvard. I heard at Columbia he wasn’t a very good student. He then gets to Harvard. How do you get into Harvard if you’re not a good student. Maybe that’s right or maybe that’s wrong. But I don’t know why he doesn’t release his records. Why doesn’t he release his Occidental records?
Trump and others have accused Obama of not authoring his memoir, while many Obama detractors continue to argue he is secretly Muslim. Both Jackson and Joseph noted that never before has a sitting president’s nationality been questioned.
Maybe the mass media could not quite bring themselves to point out that the emperor had no clothes until this final piece of proof — that the piece of paper that we were assured would “end this thing in 15 minutes” did no such thing. Of course it didn’t. Because the one credential that Pres. Barack Obama could not and cannot produce is white skin.