Jeff,i purposely took a few days to consider whether, and how to respond. i understand that blogging is not journalism, and that’s why – though popular – blogging is bullshit. i understand that you are not impartial in your blogs, but this is outright ranting. you come off, at least to lil’ ol’ me, as being just as crazy as the fringe fanatics you are blogging about. i mean, c’mon, you pick two people on the extreme as a a rebuttal to my question? you’re trying to show the invalidity of the question by pointing to Keys and Taitz – that’s a smokescreen. deal with the issue, and not the people. during the campaign i saw a so-called copy of Obama’s birth certificate. here’s a few things that are shady: (1) the one i saw was red, so which one is correct? (2) why is Obama’f father listed as African, as opposed to Kenyan? Africa is not a country, or even a nation – it is a continent. your birth certificate doesn’t list your father as American, does it? (maybe it doesn, idk) (3) the governor of Hawaii has said she WILL NOT release Obama’s birth certificate, so how is a copy floating around the internet? (4) related to my 3rd point, if someone askes me to produce my birth certificate, i can whip out a raised-seal copy. Obama could have shut this down YEARS ago by just whipping it out. he, to my limited knowledge, has not produced his own birth certificate. why? simply why?now, even in having these questions, i’m not sitting in my underwear on my front porch with a riffle and a handmade sign saying “Obama is not the president.” but, given that this is such an easy issue to resolve, it is real fishy that he hasn’t resolved it. and i don’t care how many of his supporters wanna throw Keys, Taritz, or anybody/thing else in the discussion to try and confuse the issue. whether i’m a blogger or a journalist, i’m curious as to what he is hiding – if anything.
you can support Obama, be a blogger, and be fair. even in my blogs where i stood strongly on a particular issue, i still was fair to the other side. i didn’t call them names, i didn’t belittle their viewpoint, and i didn’t confuse people with the issue. in the interest of advancing the discussion, leave the amateur stuff to the amateurs.
Aaron, I’m glad to read you aren’t sitting in your tighty whiteys on the front porch with a rifle and a handmade sign saying “Obama is not the president.” That’s a visual I can live without and one I’m sure your neighbors would agree with.
The point about picking on two wing-nuts like Orly Taitz and Alan Keyes is to provide a vivid illustration of the caliber of crackpots that are embracing this birther bullshit. We are known by the company we keep and if you choose to carry the water for cranks like those two, well…buy the ticket and take the ride.
When someone with some degree of credibility casts their lot with The Birthers, maybe I’ll take them seriously, but right now it’s the shallow end of the right-wing gene pool splashing about with them and as a supposedly serious conservative, I’m a bit surprised you’d want to get anywhere near this kind of sleazy hogwash. Had the results of the presidential election turned out differently and it was nuts on the far Left claiming John McCain wasn’t a U.S. citizen because he was born in Panama, I can assure you I’d treat them with the same scorn and contempt that I have for Keyes and Taitz.
Of course, that might just be me being as “crazy as the fringe fanactics” I blog about. The thing is if I’m crazy because I don’t believe the Birthers, what does that make you since you do?
The president has better things to refute your claims. I, on the other hand, frankly live for this kind of thing.
You like shooting fish in a barrel, Aaron? Good. Here we go. I’m not going to do a blow-by-blow repudiation of your points. Frankly, the only even semi-legitimate questions are your third and fourth so those are ones I’ll address.
(3) the governor of Hawaii has said she WILL NOT release Obama’s birth certificate, so how is a copy floating around the internet? (4) related to my 3rd point, if someone askes me to produce my birth certificate, i can whip out a raised-seal copy. Obama could have shut this down YEARS ago by just whipping it out. he, to my limited knowledge, has not produced his own birth certificate. why? simply why?
What it is that’s “floating around the internet” is not Barack Obama’s birth certificate. It is a certification of live birth which is the official document issued by the state of Hawaii to requests for a copy of a birth certificate. State officials in Hawaii have repeatedly affirmed the authenticity of the document.
You’re partially right that Obama hasn’t released his birth certificate. But Hawaii doesn’t issue birth certificates. Not to Barack Obama or anyone else. A June 2009 article from the Honolulu Star-Bulletin explains:
The state Department of Health no longer issues copies of paper birth certificates as was done in the past, said spokeswoman Janice Okubo.
The department only issues “certifications” of live births, and that is the “official birth certificate” issued by the state of Hawaii, she said.
And, it’s only available in electronic form.
Okubo explained that the Health Department went paperless in 2001.
The Birthers counter, “Well, where’s the original paper document?” By law, the state can’t release Obama’s birth records without his permission and even then the document can only be released to or inspected by someone with a “direct and tangible” interest. Sorry playa, but Keyes, Taitz and you don’t qualify.
There is no reason for President Obama to respond to these ludicrous accusations. NONE. As the leader of the free world, he’s got far more important things to do than dignify the wack-ass claims of losers like Keyes and twits like Taitz. All Obama catering to the circus clowns would do is start an entire new round of questions as to why he delayed releasing the documents and demands for independent verification that the birth certificate isn’t a forgery.
Even if Obama were to hand deliver to Keyes his birth certificate (an event which is as about as likely as Orly Taitz appearing in the next Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue), that isn’t the end of documents being demanded from the president. According to Salon.com, Gary Kreep, an attorney representing Keyes has sent out a list of other documentation they want to get their hands on:
You’re a reasonable man, Aaron. Does that list seem remotely reasonable to you?
Finally, let’s address the ancillary issue of blogging and my approach to it.
You’re dang tootin’ blogging ain’t journalism. It doesn’t pay nearly as well and the audience is a lot smaller. Even smaller than the Columbus Post. I’ve never pretended to be anything remotely close to an objective journalist when I’m blogging, but I don’t tell lies or deliberately mislead the readers I do have. I value them too much to insult their intelligence that way.
What you fail to remember Aaron is that even when I was an active journalist, I always wore several hats. I’ve been a reporter, a editor and a columnist. My professional obligations to impartiality and objectivity only extend to the reporter and editor roles. As a columnist, I said what I thought and tried to support it with a factual foundation.
You want me to debate the substance of the Birthers claims? Sorry, but I can’t do that. That would give the Birthers a legitimacy they aren’t worthy of. I won’t give them the legitimacy of taking them seriously enough to give their absurd claims a hearing.
You say I’m not “fair to the other side?” What’s fair? I’m a liberal and progressive who’s coming from the Left side of the aisle. That can’t be a news flash. I’m not inclined or qualified to give the conservative perspective. I leave that to someone who is better at it than I am. Somebody like you, Mr. Martin.
I’m not going to pretend I’m going to be fair because the unfair way the Birthers have treated President Obama doesn’t deserve fairness. There are legitimate reasons to disagree with Obama, but calling him an illegitimate president isn’t one of them.
What I find most interesting about your remarks isn’t you throwing Obama to the wolves. Nothing new about that. No, what is new is you taking me to task as a blogger and journalist, but you accept without any proof the most absurd claims from some notoriously unreliable sources. When did you lose the healthy dose of skepticism a good reporter needs, Aaron?
I hope you’re finally done with this because barring any future revelations, I certainly am. You’ve got at least three more years and possibly eight to gripe about what the president does. Why waste time on silly nonsense about his birth?