Monday, November 3, 2008

Obama's hometown

I alluded to it here, but I'll just make a little mini post underscoring it: Barack Hussein Obama, the son of a Black student from Kenya and a White student from Kansas, was born right here in Honolulu. He also was raised here, attending the elite Punahou School just down the street (thanks in no small part to his grandmother's hard work), and his ailing 86-year-old grandmother still lives here. When it seemed her death might be imminent, he flew out here just over a week ago (following a visit in August) and I bet he'll be back here right after the election. 

But some people have difficulty accepting this. In response to a "barrage of requests," the Hawaii State Department of Health has issued a statement that they have examined Obama's actual birth certificate and determined it to be valid. 

Yes, there are some people who believe that they can get Obama disqualified to run for president by casting doubt on whether he was actually born in the United States (never mind that, like Panama-born John McCain, being born to a U.S. citizen would make him a natural born citizen even if he actually had been born in Kenya, as has been alleged).

The registrar for the health department has even received calls at home in the middle of the night (no respect for the Hawaii-Aleutians Time Zone, I tell ya, no respect!). My guess is that the folks who are all antsy at 8 or 9 a.m. on the East Coast start calling people here in Hawaii when it's 2 or 3 a.m. (when the Mainland's on daylight savings), not realizing that it's the middle of the night; and if these folks are too dumb to understand how time zones work, I don't have the loftiest of impressions about their ability to discern whether the evidence before them points to a conspiracy or not.

Health Director Chiyome Fukino, whose department must deal with a rising meth epidemic, tuberculosis, possible bioterrorist plots, health care problems among the poor, indigenous health concerns, etc., etc., has gotten tired of this.
"This has gotten ridiculous," state health director Dr. Chiyome Fukino said yesterday. "There are plenty of other, important things to focus on, like the economy, taxes, energy."

So, in what likely will be a vain attempt to halt the inquiries, Fukino yesterday issued a statement saying that she and the registrar of vital statistics personally inspected Obama's birth certificate and found it to be valid.

Will this be enough to quiet the doubters?

"I hope so," Fukino said. "We need to get some work done."
Apparently when you're famous everybody thinks your right to privacy is out the door. Relentless search for dirt in documents, hacking into email accounts, etc.—these are dirty, illegitimate ways to treat people. Yes, we need to verify the constitutional eligibility of people running for public office, but that has already been done.
In Hawai'i, birth, death, marriage and certain divorce documents can only be released to people with a "tangible interest," such as the people themselves, their parents, spouses, grandparents or other relatives.

As a result, Fukino said she does not believe Health Department officials could release Obama's birth certificate to the public even with his permission, although she would need to get a legal ruling to be certain.
It's good to know someone still respects the privacy of individuals. It's doubtful, though, that Obama's relentless critics will ever accept that they are wrong on this matter or that it has already been resolved. 

Read the rest of the Honolulu Advertiser article. The Honolulu Star-Bulletin, our other major newspaper here, also has a write-up, just in case the fascists at the Advertiser start charging money for their archived pieces. 

December 8, 2008 update
Conservative columnist Ronald Kessler chimes in on the bogusness of the issue. Meanwhile, here is a link to the 1961 Honolulu Advertiser announcement of Obama's birth; it is in the far left column (ha!), the seventh one down after the BABIES THRIVE ON CARNATION ad.

[left: Please leave State Health Department director Chiyome Fukino alone. She needs her rest.]

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