I woke up this morning to see the news that the White House has finally released a birth certificate for Obama. And of course our utterly incompetent news media, like broken hound dogs that serve no function whatsoever, save to lick their master’s hands, accepted this newly released “birth certificate” without even investigating its authenticity. Our news media is the envy of every dictatorship the world over. Unlike them, I still have some questions:
1) Did Obama release a physical copy of it, or just a digital image? A digital image is not proof of anything. Many digital images of Obama’s Kenyan birth certificate have circulated on the Internet that turned out to be Photoshopped forgeries. If what Obama released today only exists on a computer and in cyber space in the form of pixels, then there’s no reason to accept it as any more legitimate than those Kenyan birth certificates floating around on the Net, and I would have to proclaim with pride that I am still a birther. If what the White House released today was a physical copy, again, this proves nothing. Obama has had over two and a half years to come up with a nice-looking forgery. The be all, end all will be an independently studied physical copy. If independent investigators inspected the document and declared it’s real, yes, I will accept it. I’m not going to jump on any “Forgery!” bandwagon as long as this document is independently studied. (That said, it’s looking like this is a forgery. See next image farther down.)
2) The image released has that weave-patterned background/border, which is normal, but if you notice, the left side of the window within that border that contains all the information is curving away, like a photocopied image from a book placed within the “official” birth certificate border. I don’t know if this is standard or not. It just looks weird, that’s all. It’s probably standard. (More info on this farther down.)
3) Remember when Donald Trump said he has private investigators and that “they can’t believe what they’re finding” in Hawaii? If this document is Photoshopped, it would make sense that Obama would release it now after two and a half years of being hounded by everybody except the news media, who are supposed to be the ones doing the hounding. See, Obama would have realized, “Crap, Trump’s investigators are finding things out. I have to come up with a birth certificate fast before they release to the public what they’re finding. That way, when they announce what they’re finding, everybody will discount whatever it is because I will have already released my [Photoshopped] birth certificate.” Again, that would be Obama’s reasoning for releasing it now if this is a forgery: because whoever releases the info to the media first is the person who will be believed. Obama had to preempt Trump.
4) If the document in question is not a forgery, then this begs more questions, not least of which is in reference to a one Lt. Col. Terrence Lakin. Lakin is a decorated vet who, in 2010, after serving eighteen years in the Army, decided that he could not in good conscience serve for a president who may not even be eligible to risk our soldier’s lives at all. He was court-martialed, dismissed from the Army, lost all benefits, and imprisoned three days before Christmas, taken from his wife and three kids. He remains in prison to this day, nearing completion of his six-month prison term. It was at the moment that Obama learned of the impending imprisonment of Terrence Lakin that Obama should have put an end to the questions once and for all. For Obama to let a man go to prison because he is taking a principled stand against Obama’s secrecy, and to not at that moment save Lakin from imprisonment, is an atrocious injustice. So it begs the question: Why didn’t Obama release it back then in order to save one of his troops from going to prison? Could it be that the birth certificate didn’t exist yet? Could it be that Obama hadn’t yet made arrangements for a forgery to be made? If Obama had any class (ha, ha), he would pardon Lakin, releasing him from jail. And then Lakin should sue Obama over his wrongful imprisonment—because if it is indeed a real birth certificate that Obama released today, then it most definitely was wrongful imprisonment—and donate the money he wins in court to any pro-American, pro-military, or pro-life charity. You know, to really piss Obama off.
5) Another important question among many is, Why has Obama spent so much money on attorney fees to prevent his birth certificate from going public? Some reports say $800,000 have been spent, some say $1 million, some say $2 million (and an attorney for Obama has even admitted this, but didn’t disclose the specific amount). Another question: Why did Democrat Governor Abercrombie of Hawaii say that Hawaii had no records on Obama’s birth? Why does Obama have a Connecticut Social Security number? Why did the Kenyan Ambassador to the U.S. say that Obama was born in Mombasa, Kenya, and that there was a plaque at the birth location commemorating the birth? Why did Snopes.com, a fact-checking and myth-busting website that “debunked” the birthers’ beliefs, say that a Dr. Rodney T. West was the attending physician for Obama’s birth, when the “official birth certificate” released today by the White House says that a David T. Sinclair was the attending physician? Which name is correct? How did Obama travel to Pakistan with a U.S. passport when he was young while it was illegal for U.S. citizens to travel to Pakistan during that time? There are so many more questions that hopefully I’ll have the patience to put in another post in the future, but the point is that there are still lots of questions unanswered. And even some new ones that are brought up with the release of the birth certificate today.
Here is another shot of what the White House released today, highlighted to correspond with the following points made on this website:
- If the original document was in a bound volume (as reflected by the curvature of the left-hand side of the certificate), how can the green, patterned background of the document’s safety paper be so seamless? (Click here for zoomed image.)
- Why is the baby’s height and weight not on this birth certificate? Is there any other birth certificate in America that doesn’t contain this information? (If anybody knows of one and can show me, please do.)
This next one is a big one for me, because as a photographer who works with Photoshop often, I know how hard it is to select and extract text from a photo, especially a blurry photo, without creating a white halo around the letters. And if you want to sharpen the blurred letters, it exacerbates the white halos:
Still, as I said, questions still remain about all of this.
Whereas before I was 100% positive Obama was not born in Hawaii, now I am on the fence. To non-birthers, I suppose that’s progress. But believing that Obama wasn’t born here is a difficult thing to believe. With every single one of Obama’s disastrous policies, I felt such anger that he, someone not even legally allowed to do what he was doing, was doing it. If I accept that he was born here, though, that burden would be lifted and I can then move on to being angry at the policies themselves rather than at the injustice of an ineligible president enacting those policies.
I think this whole saga of birtherism is really just a testament to the validity of the claim that the news media died in 2008. The journalists, reporters, interviewers, etc., are supposed to be hound dogs, as I alluded to before. They are supposed to hound members of the public for information. Our news media is dead. It took the fervent demands of ordinary private citizens to get Obama to uncover his birth certificate. The news media—George Stephanopoulos, Katie Couric, Rachel Maddow, etc.—and even talking heads such as the women of The View—they all took Obama at his word when he said that the previously released image of his “birth certificate” was indeed his birth certificate. They attacked anyone who questioned its validity rather than doing some actual investigative reporting. And it turned out that what Obama previously released was not his birth certificate, but a certification of live birth—a document that any child was given back then in Hawaii as long as the parents told the Hawaiian State Department that their child was born there. In other words, it only proved that Obama’s parents told Hawaii’s State Department he was born there, not that he actually was born there. So the news media then went with this narrative: “Well, no, it’s not his actual birth certificate, but Hawaii says it’s just as valid as one.” The news media said this. The news media. They engage in more cover-ups than our own government does. If Obama slips on a banana peel, they are there to catch him, shoving aside the Secret Service, and then they declare that Obama meant to slip.
I don’t want Donald Trump to be president. Vice president, maybe. But bravo to him for having the courage and the competence to do what the dead news media hopelessly failed at doing: holding a public figure to task.
Update 1: The reason for the white halos surrounding the text is because this birth certificate is made up of layers. If you take the original PDF file the White House released and open it up in either Photoshop or Adobe Illustrator, it opens up with all the layers separated, not merged. Some are saying that this layering is typical for OCR software—software that recognizes text in a document, cuts it out, makes it darker and easier to read, then pastes it back into the original image. When people scan faded documents or books, they use this software. I will buy this explanation because I am somewhat familiar with OCR software myself.
Update 2: There are now posts on the Internet claiming that the hospital mentioned on this birth certificate wasn’t given that name (Kapi’olani Maternal & Gynecological Hospital) until 1978 (even though it was not named that in 1978, but something much different). Other similar controversies regarding the name have been stirred up, but this this blog post (it’s a liberal site, but give credit where credit is due) puts an end to all those controversies.
Update 3: The Nordyke twins are famous for being born at the same hospital as Obama one day after he was born. You would expect, then, that their birth certificates look exactly like Obama’s does (save for the information provided on the birth certificate). But it looks dramatically different (see image below). Also, if Obama was born before the twins, the number on his birth certificate would be lower than theirs; yet his is 641, and theirs are 637 and 638 respectively. And finally, Mrs. Nordyke (the twins’ mother) does not remember Obama’s mother, Stanley Ann Dunham, in the maternity ward of the hospital, and yet they did meet later and become friends. I would think you would remember if you had seen your friend before actually meeting her. “Ohh, yeahh, wow, that was you? That’s so funny that we saw each other back then and now we officially meet and are friends!” Yet she doesn’t remember seeing her at all. It could be just a horrible memory, granted, so this is not a selling point for me.
Update 4: On October 31, 2008, Dr. Chiyome Fukino had this to say: “I, Dr. Chiyome Fukino, director of the Hawaii State Department of Health, have seen the original vital records….” Notice she says “records,” plural. What Obama released is a one-pager, singular. Either she was lying or what Obama released is not a copy of the original. Speaking of which, Obama still has not released the original birth certificate. He released a copy of what he claims is the original. Actually, scratch that; Obama did not claim that he released the original birth certificate; he merely said he has released “additional information.” I guess that way the media won’t be able to pin it on him that he lied, not that the media would hold him to task on anything, ever.
Update 5: The applications, memos, and other documents from the Immigration and Naturalization Service acquired in a Freedom of Information Act request by Heather Smathers of the Arizona Independent indicate Barack Obama Sr. would have been 27 at the time of his son’s birth, not 25, as this alleged birth certificate indicates.