I got an email from Charles Kerchner (Kerchner v Obama) pointing out that as far as birth certificates go, we have two images on the Internet, one saying President Obama was born in Honolulu and the other in Mombasa, Kenya. He says they are of equal value since they are just images, and indeed the Kenyan certificate is of greater value because while the Kenyan Ambassador has confirmed Obama’s birth in Kenya, and the President’s grandmother testified that she held the baby in Mombasa, no one has come forward to say they were present at Obama’s birth in Hawaii.
As with most birther misdirection, a little bit of truth is mixed with lies to fool the credulous.
The truth is that they are both pieces of paper on the Internet, but there are differences.
Kenyan Birth Certificate:
- Very low resolution photos, making it relatively easy to fake.
- The claim that Obama’s grandmother said she held him in Mombasa is a bald-faced lie.
- The Kenyan Ambassador denies ever saying that President Obama was born in Kenya.
- We have no idea where the document came from (no provenance)
Hawaiian Birth Certificate
- Confirmation of registration and Hawaiian birth by state health department
- High-resolution scans and photos, more difficult to fake, examined by independent news organization
- Birth announcement in 2 newspapers
- Clear provenance, campaign officials say it was ordered from Hawaii, and it was presented by (then) Senator Obama himself.
While this little forgery exercise does make it clear that one should be skeptical of documents on the Internet, it also teaches a lesson on authoritative sources and confirmation, vs things that some from nowhere.
There are various internal inconsistencies that have been pointed out that suggest that the Kenyan certificate is more a hoax than a forgery (e.g. the certificate number 47,044 – Obama was 47 years old when he became the 44th president of the U. S. ) One wonders if the signer ODUYA is a play on “Oh, do ya?”, not unlike “Oh really? — O RLY? Once folks on the Internet have had time to paw over it for a few days, I’ll issue a report.
The original document used to fake the Obama Kenyan Birth Certificate has been found. End of story, thanks to Koyaan.