The Tribune once again took a swipe at a decorated soldier from Greeley who simply asked for a document that the President finally released last week.
Using mocking words, the Tribune, in an editorial, appears to take pleasure in Lt. Col. Terry Lakin’s going to jail for missing a movement. He felt compelled to take this action after attempting for more than a year to get answers to questions that could have been resolved with the release of the long form birth certificate Obama released last week. They seem to take a greater delight in his sentence than in the prison sentences of convicted drug dealers, murderers and sex offenders.
They state dogmatically that it was wrong to have doubts over Obama’s citizenship. This is a strong statement when there is no evidence of them ever having investigated the issue for themselves.
Unlike the Tribune, the Gazette actually sent a reporter to cover Lakin’s court martial last year. A search of articles on Lakin by both newspapers will reveal a stark difference between the papers. In our coverage we actually interviewed Lakin’s brother and printed letters showing the depth to which the family wished to resolve this issue.
The Gazette also interviewed retired generals and JAG officers regarding the case. While there may be some who disagree with the stand Lakin took or whether one should question a president’s qualifications, one thing is clear. We did not simply copy and paste from other news sites, we actually talked to people.
By contrast the Tribune interviewed no one, except Lakin’s parents when the issue first broke, and then only to find out their opinion on his actions. They couldn’t even get the location of the court martial correct, saying it was Fort McNair. All other Tribune coverage was based on information provided by the Associated Press.
The Tribune has long had a disdain for Terry Lakin; comparing him to a vicious murderer, Allan Andrade, who killed transvestite Angie Zapata. Now, in mocking tones, after Obama released the long form birth certificate, the Tribune said, “Well, he has his proof now.”
What is amazing is, up until last week, the media swore that Obama had already released his birth certificate to the public. They said the proof had already been offered and there was nothing more to release. With the release of the certificate last week, which most assuredly is not the same as the Certification of Live Birth presented during the campaign, those in the media who claim to have seen the birth certificate were shown to be liars.
The Tribune seems to discount Lakin’s concerns about Obama’s eligibility simply because the state of Hawaii said he was eligible. This is the same state who said that no one, including the President would be allowed to copy the long form. Never mind that a woman was able to obtain what was supposed to be unobtainable in October. Again, never question why there is a contradiction here.
The Tribune stated they were preparing to fight for the sealing of records in the case of Greeley Police Officer Daniel Shephard’s alleged sexual assault of a young woman. Why? After all, shouldn’t we just accept whatever the police and prosecutors say happened and trust their judgment? We don’t need to verify what they are saying is correct do we?
The answer is, of course we do. We also need to hold the President, regardless of party affiliation, to the same standards of openness and transparency we expect from our police officers. Obama is not a private citizen and the qualifications for President are the highest of any position listed in the Constitution.
The fact is there are numerous discrepancies in Obama’s birth and early history that should justify asking questions. There is the matter of two different hospitals being listed as the place of his birth. We have documented how a posting on his own campaign website showed Queens as the hospital of his birth. Obama’s half-sister even said he was born at Queens and then later changed her story to say he was born in Kapiolani. Of course, no big deal since everyone is born at two different hospitals.
Additionally there are a number of foreign newspapers who have claimed that Obama was born in Africa. The Kenyan Observer in 2008 made reference to “the Kenyan born senator.” African Travel Magazine declared “as Kenyan born, US Senator Barrack Obama gets into Kenya today…” Other Kenyan officials have said that Obama was born there. No other President has had this number of foreign sources claiming birth outside the US.
Do their statements alone mean that Obama was born in Kenya? Of course not, the Gazette has never asserted that he was. However, unlike the Tribune we believe these discrepancies merit a closer look. There was a time when newspapers realized it was their responsibility to investigate and ask questions. When faced with discrepancies like this they would ask politicians to explain the contradictions.
The Tribune’s editorial all but called Lakin, and anyone who would inquire into these discrepancies, a racist. They asked, “When has any president ever been asked to repeatedly prove he was born in this country?” Thus implying that no other candidate has ever been asked these questions.
Their question shows either a profound ignorance of history or a deliberate attempt at lying. If they had bothered to do any research they would have discovered that white Republican, Dwight Eisenhower needed to produce his birth certificate to run for president.
If that is too far back, then we need only go back to the last election. The New York Times became the first “birthers” by questioning whether John McCain, another white Republican, met the definition of natural born citizen under the Constitution. Their intense questioning led to the Senate holding hearings on McCain’s eligibility but they did not hold similar hearings for Obama.
What was interesting is that in the resolution co-sponsored by Obama declaring McCain eligible he may have indicated his own ineligibility.
There are many legal scholars who believe the definition of natural born citizen, as opposed to simply citizen refers to being born on American soil to two American parents. In the resolution declaring McCain to be qualified,Obama and the other senators appear to acknowledge this point.
The resolution states, “Whereas there is no evidence of the intention of the Framers or any Congress to limit the constitutional rights of children born to Americans serving in the military nor to prevent those children from serving as their country’s President,” It goes on to state that McCain is eligible because he “was born to American citizens on an American military base in the Panama Canal Zone in 1936.”
If this definition is correct then Obama would be ineligible regardless of what state he was born in. His father was a Muslim polygamist with a British passport. This is why the Supreme Court needs to issue a definitive ruling on what constitutes a natural born citizen.
Currently there is no controlling legal authority for determining the eligbility of any candiate. The courts have ruled it is the job of Congress and the electoral college to determine eligibility. Congress has said the issue should be decided by the courts.
It is also amazing that the Tribune does not seem to want to ask why Obama did not release the birth certificate last year. If, as they say it answers all the questions, then why did he not release it when not just Lakin but other members of the military were asking for it? He could have released it and prevented Lakin, a man whom everyone agrees had a sterling record of service from going to jail.
Why didn’t the president care about the millions of dollars spent on lawsuits by both parties that clogged up the court system asking for the birth certificate? Letters by the Lakin family to the president obtained by the Gazette showed that Obama knew releasing the certificate could have prevented Lakin’s court-martial and conviction. Instead he released it following a USA Today poll showing only 38 percent of the American people believed he was born in the U.S. By releasing it only when it benefits him, and ignoring legitimate concerns by members of the military he has shown a callous disregard for those under his command.
The Tribune says “he gave up his military career to prove a point that wasn’t possible to prove.” Of course, the media now says the birth certificate released last week proves he is eligible. So which is it? According to the Tribune, it is impossible to prove Obama is eligible, that is quite an admission. We have never said such a thing, they appear to be more extreme on the eligibility issue than we are.
Now that the certificate has been released, the pattern by the Tribune and other media continues, “quickly now, let’s move along, nothing to see here.” The White House says that’s the real deal so okay, that settles it.
Let’s not ask some basic questions such as how a photocopy of a 1961 document could look so pristine. There are already experts, including one in Grand Junction saying the document has been altered. Another expert, Ivan Zatkovich has said “There was an explicit action by a person to modify the document.” Zatkovich has over 28 years of experince in computer science and document management. For the past 10 years he has been used as an expert witness in federal court for civil and criminal proceedings.
We do believe these questions should be looked into. This is why if Obama truly wished to put the issue behind him he would submit his original copy to a forensic test.
If Woodward and Bernstein had followed the lead of today’s journalists, Nixon would have never been forced from office in disgrace. They did what journalists are supposed to do, question and investigate. Not simply blindly accept whatever our leaders tell us.
If there are questions about a leader’s qualifications, it is the responsibility of a free and independent press to look into it. Sadly, the Tribune appears not to have done so; it’s easier to let other news organizations do the work for them.