Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Anti-Obama lunatics living in denial

US President Barack Obama waves during his inauguration ceremony as the 44th President of the United States in Washington, January 20, 2009. Obama became the first African-American president in U.S. history. Photo/REUTERS

US President Barack Obama waves during his inauguration ceremony as the 44th President of the United States in Washington, January 20, 2009. Obama became the first African-American president in U.S. history. Photo/REUTERS 

They are living in denial. In America they are equated to lunatics, but their push to drop anything credible to force President Obama out of office includes forgery in the land of Obama’s father.

The group — the birthers — are the fringe “lunatics” who insist Obama is not a natural-born citizen — a US constitutional requirement for the presidency.

Russian-born lawyer, dentist and estate agent Orly Taitz, on the eve of Obama’s 48th birthday, told CNN’s David Shuster: “Your listeners need to know the truth”.

But the birth certificate purporting Mr Obama was born in Kenya differs with genuine certificates issued in the early 1960s, the Nation can reveal.

Certificates issued during the colonial period were marked “Colony and Protectorate of Kenya”. Today’s have the logo of the Government of Kenya, with a seal.

Orly, the most prominent anti-Obama “birther”, recently released a document entitled “Certified Copy of Registration of Birth” stating Obama was born on “4th August, 1961 at Coast General Hospital.”

The supposed copy dated 17th February 1964 carries the signature of deputy registrar Joshua Simon Oduya, along with the inscription “Office of the Principal Registrar, Coast Province, Republic of Kenya.”

Researchers point out that while Kenya became an independent nation in December 1963, it remained known as the Dominion of Kenya until December 1964 — 10 months after the “certified copy” was allegedly made.

The document also refers to the signature of “registrar E. F. Lavender,” which, The Washington Independent points out, “happened to be the name of a popular soap in Kenya.”

The Independent also quotes Jon Chessoni, a first secretary at the Kenyan embassy in Washington, as calling the claims madness. “His father, in 1961, would not even have been in Kenya,” he said.

A British professor in African history points out the term “Coast Province” could not have been used in early 1964, Dan Branch, of the University of Warwick, said at that time, Kenyan provinces were referred to as “regions.”

The “birthers” attract some media attention in the US. Officials there have said repeatedly that they have no doubt about the authenticity of an Obama birth certificate indicating the president was born in Honolulu, the state’s capital city.

Some “birthers” critics suggest it is motivated by racism. “Is the fact that he is the first African-American president a factor?”

Washington Post columnist Eugene Robinson asks. “Is it that some people can’t or won’t accept that he won the election and serves as commander in chief?

Immigration minister Otieno Kajwang’ dismissed the documents thus: “If we get those individuals, they will be jailed for forging government documents.”

According to a poll released last week by Research 2000, 28 per cent of Republicans think that Obama was not born in the US and another 30 per cent are “not sure”.

Eligibility

Adding “credibility” to the “birthers” are Alan Keyes, a former Republican presidential candidate, who has filed a lawsuit questioning Obama’s eligibility for office, and Republican senator James Inhofe, who says he can’t bring himself to “discourage” the movement.
Names aside, Mombasa, where the certificate says he was born, belonged to Zanzibar at the time , not Kenya. And so on.

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