Tuesday, February 08, 2011

[1596] HAIL TO THE CHIEF- OUR KENYAN BORN PRESIDENT? [and other fables]. Okay- before you liberals curse me out and do a quick delete hear me out. I did mention the other day that if you want people to read your posts you need to catch their interest with a ‘short- pithy comment’ [OReilly]. In the last post I mentioned how some people do indeed think/believe the president is a closet Muslim. A few weeks ago the N.Y. Times ran a story- showing how a very high percentage of people do think he is Muslim [I think it was close to 20 %] and in the last post I mentioned why these beliefs are so prevalent; to just dismiss all these people as right wing Tea Party nut cases is a major mistake in my view. Now- out of all the Presidents of the past- President Obama is the only one who spent time living in the most populous Muslim country in the world [Indonesia] he did attend schools with other Muslim boys- his father also felt strongly enough about his cultural heritage that they did give the president a ‘Muslim’ sounding name [as opposed to Barry- the name he used in school]. And of course there have been times, caught on tape, where the president said he was indeed Muslim [my Muslim faith]. Okay- taking all these things into consideration- it’s not out of the realm of possibility to think he is indeed Muslim. Like I said yesterday- I personally don’t hold to this idea- but for others to embrace it is not a ‘wacko’ belief. Second- I do find it kinda funny to see all the liberals voice such outrage at the idea- they do sound like Seinfeld on the episode where they thought Jerry was gay- all through the show he says ‘I’m not gay’ and of course has to add ‘not that there’s anything wrong with it’. I do think the defenders are protesting a little too much- after all the left [MSNBC crowd] are the ones always accusing the right [FOX CROWD] of Islamaphobia! Right now there are reasonable moderate voices on both sides of the political spectrum- if you listen carefully to the president- he is very much a moderate voice- he sees both sides and does his best to make the more liberal argument- in a very intelligent way. You also have people like George Will, Kathleen Parker [Spitzer's sidekick on their new CNN show] and others who make an intelligent case for conservative principles [Paul Ryan too]. These voices articulate their case well- share their views- and at the end of the day are able to sit down across the table [or pub- Boehner] and spend some time fellowshipping with the other side [a good example would be Orin Hatch and Ted Kennedy- a right/left wing friendship that was able to thrive even though they held sincerely to their beliefs]. This is what we need more of- both in politics and- yes- religion. As someone who has spent many years engaging the various religious beliefs- the different stands that Christian churches hold to- it is very sad to see the demonization of one church by the other. Often times we view the ‘opposing team’ in the worst possible light- and then after you demonize them- it is next to impossible to sit down later and try to understand one another- because everyone on your team already believes they are the enemy- and if your caught rooting for the opposing team- then you too become ‘one of them’. So we seem to have lost the art of respectful dialogue- yes we can ‘cut each other down’ in a friendly way- kid in fun- but to actually view the other side as the enemy- for real- that’s dangerous. I heard 2 statements yesterday about the president- that I liked. They came from staunch Republicans- John McCain and Lindsey Graham. They were both asked about how they felt the president was handling the revolt in Egypt- they said they felt he was doing his best and they supported him. It seemed like they knew something that the average citizen might not- that the president is really trying to do his best- and the narrative that is trying to link him to an undercover Muslim plot to take over the Middle east- well that narrative might be affecting the president a little more than we realize. Now- what’s the ‘real story’ with the president’s birth certificate? Let me give you my best shot. I have watched this debate for a long time- I’m obviously a watcher of both the left and the right [by the way- I think The Daily Show with Jon Stewart is a good show- he does comedy/news- but he is fair and does get the story right most of the time]. During the campaign some people made an issue out of the fact that the Obama team never released his original birth certificate- was he secretly born in Kenya they asked. Of course this idea was rejected out of hand at first- but as time went on it became a story- a ‘narrative’ that fit certain conspiratorial views. As I listened to the staunch defenders of the president [Matthews] defend the president time after time- interviewing right wingers [Gordon Liddy- you know- the Nixon guy who bit off the rat head- hey- you can’t get more stanch then that!] Matthews would go into his normal rage ‘how dare you even think anything like that!’ I found it interesting to see the ‘birthers’ respond fairly reasonably. The defenders of the President would often point out ‘the fact’ that the Hawaiian Certificate of Birth [the record Obama has put out] was the official original certificate- I even saw a video of a young school child saying how you can find the presidents birth certificate on line [MSNBC showed the clip- saying ‘look- even this young girl is brighter than the Tea Party]. So after hearing Matthews go on- week after week- month after month- I mean he reported many times that the Certificate of Birth was the actual birth certificate- he explained it very thoroughly- that people are confused because that is Hawaii’s birth certificate- you don’t get a ‘normal one’ like we do on the mainland. I mean he described his belief well. The problem- yes, once again- he was just flat wrong. How do I know- because after the recent elections Hawaii got a new Democratic governor- he grew up with Obama’s parents- went to school with them. As soon as he got in office he made headlines by publicly stating that he was tired of the whole birther conspiracy- he was going to put the rumor to rest once and for all. So he says he personally will override any privacy rules and release the document by Divine [okay- governmental] decree! So Matthews jumps on the bandwagon- does a show where he gets these 2 Democrats to agree with him- yes- lets finally release the real thing. Matthews holds up a redacted copy of someone’s real Hawaiian birth certificate [you know- the thing he swore never existed- the thing he called the birthers idiots over- because they insisted that what Obama showed us was not the real thing] so Matthews holds a real Hawaiian birth certificate up and compares it to the thing Obama has released- the Certificate of Live birth- and Matthews goes on to explain that these 2 things are indeed very different- the Certificate thing- the thing the birthers said was not the real McCoy all along- Matthews now agrees with them- guess he finally googled ‘is the certificate of birth the real thing’- and got the same answer the right wingers were giving him. So Matthews joins the liberal chorus of ‘now it’s time to release the real thing- let’s put this thing to bed once and for all’. How did the story end? Well the other day the governor put out a very quiet announcement- he said ‘I will not seek to reveal the birth certificate- it would violate the privacy laws’ and that’s that. Matthews made a small mention about people who still demand the ‘paper hard copy’ he said it in a way where you could tell he too has dropped the matter. What happened? Again- if you’re a birther- this would play into your worst case scenario ‘see- I knew it’ type thing. But what happened? After all the years of watching this debate- I think there are 2 possibilities; 1- it is very possible that the birth certificate might record the presidents religion as Muslim- his father was a proud Muslim [not that there’s anything wrong with it!] and they were thinking ‘culturally’ at the time of his birth [they named him Barak Hussein] so this is a possibility- the other thing is Hawaii might have actually lost the real thing- I mean birth certificates do accidently get destroyed- fires happen- there are many cases where the original does not exist any more. So- I’m sure someone ‘in the know’ finally contacted Matthews and said ‘here's the scoop’ and he dropped it. Why not just report the real story? If the ‘religion section’ says Muslim [I don’t know if there is a section for religion] sure- you could explain the fact that parents don’t choose their kids religion- you could explain the fact that Obama joined a Christian church in Chicago- but you would never be able to stop the critics from using it as major attack tool. So yes- both sides might have gotten it wrong [I mean Matthews ridiculed his guests over and over again- he described people as idiots because they insisted the certificate we were all seeing on line was the actual original- he was just flat wrong]. But when we view the other side with disdain- whether that side be right or left- then it’s hard for us to see that yes- they might have been right [about one part of the story] while being wrong about another part. I think there are good points to be made by both conservatives and liberals- but if I hate you- I will never hear your side.

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