I am not a lawyer (not a doctor either), but folks who are not lawyers have opinions about the law, myself included.
My own legal education has come from a variety of sources, not the least of which is the Law and Order television show. I also learn from listening to what lawyers say here and elsewhere, reading cases, books and listening to Public Radio. All of that has led to the formulation of some strong heuristics (rules of thumb and general principles) that I use to form legal opinions about new situations that arise. Those rules of thumb are informed by my overall sense of morality and fair play–even my religion. My legal heuristics are honed by argument with any and all comers.
Many Obama citizenship denialists also seem to have their own heuristics, very different from mine, that inform them on a multitude of issues. I say that they are pretty much all wrong because they keep losing in court. We all suffer from a confirmation bias, but it is a disproportionate disadvantage for people who are cranks. The legal concept of “standing” is a great example of a pitfall that has tripped up virtually all of the lawsuits against President Obama on eligibility issues. It’s complicated and not intuitive, at least not at first.
Having said all that, I remind myself that I am not a lawyer; I am an amateur, a hobbyist. When I apply my heuristics, I am often wrong. Critical thinking outside of historical context can only get one so far. Fortunately for me, I keep one heuristic at the forefront that keeps me out of trouble: “I am not a lawyer.” I am also not too arrogant to ask for advice.