A Matter of Real Journalism and Constitutional Obedience
April 6, 2011
Media elites and respected commentators both left and right, are guilty of ridiculing and making light of citizens who question the constitutional requirement to prove birth status for holding the highest political call in the land, President of the United States.
Called “birthers” as if a pejorative term, these journalists are supposed students and purveyors of facts and evidence which tell a story; a story that affects the welfare of the public at large.
This issue has always been a “trump card” for someone brave enough to challenge elitist mockery. America’s newest birther now weighs in. Donald Trump has thrown his hat in the ring over the last several weeks with those ridiculed for asking if a cover-up is, in fact, occurring regarding the most basic qualification for holding the highest office of public service in the land. Good for him.
Journalists from the main stream and those of select independent online, radio and television outlets have chosen to sweep under the “proof of truth” rug a question asked of millions of Americans daily; and in the case of a President the most important single first qualifier to hold public office of trust per the US Constitution.
The simple question, “Where is your birth certificate?” has been asked of me for far less sensitive positions than Chief Executive Officer of our government and Commander in Chief of our Armed Forces.
May I point out the average citizen’s requirement? This is the short list of those occasions in which I was required to provide a birth certificate:
Los Angeles County Marriage License
Social Security Number application
First post- high school job, government clerk with the FBI.
Joining Army ROTC in college
US Passport application
Reserve Officer with a Southern California Police Department
Yesterday a personal friend of mine and I were in a discussion and he was in a hurry to find his birth certificate for qualification to teach at a state university. We joked, of course, about him running for President. “Then it wouldn’t matter,” I quipped.
Fraud is rampant. For years someone has used my social security number requiring me to file a paper tax return to the IRS each year. I asked an IRS employee what I could do. He chuckled and just said, “Good luck.”
If the government can’t help the citizen in his legitimate rights to identity, can it protect the citizen from someone pretending to be other than they really are?
What is so damning about citizens asking a candidate for President of the United States to offer proof of his status as required by the constitution? I had to do so in order to become a Federal employee.
The Constitution is clear: “No person except a natural born citizen, or a citizen of the United States, at the time of the adoption of the Constitution, shall be eligible to the office of President…” (Article 2, Section 1)
There are witnesses in Kenya who assert Mr. Obama was born there. His own grandmother makes that assertion. There are witnesses in Hawaii who say no record of birth exists for him there. In fact, a birth certificate shares what hospital, doctor, and so forth an American is born in and delivered by.
Not so with the “Certificate of Live Birth” Mr. Obama provided to qualify for his job. Any document counterfeit shop in East LA could create one of those. This is simple.
Either proof of birth as prescribed by the Constitution of the United States matters or it does not.
A legitimate opportunity for the judicial branch of government to make inquiry and interpret the meaning of Article 2 Section 1 of the Constitution exists regarding constitutional authority to serve in the highest office in the land.
If this goes unasked when doubt is cast, what of great importance for office qualification shall ever be asked?
This isn’t even necessarily a question of being anti-Obama.
How about it being a question of pro-constitutionality and honest journalism?
News flash to news employees and their employers: If you are going to disrespect journalistic integrity by avoiding hard questions then quit calling yourselves journalists. You have already lost respect of millions in the country. Why not be bold and ask tough questions, controversial questions, questions of Constitutional significance?
Mr. Obama will clearly serve out his term. A wonderful opportunity now exists for an honest journalist to step up to a challenge. Study Mr. Obama’s constitutional authority for serving. Study if Article 2 Section 1 has been circumvented, either innocently or intentionally, and by so doing cement the standard in constitutional concrete for those seeking high office in the future by clearing up a nagging question:
Perhaps I have sunk to a new low in asking this simple question. Without a doubt I have eliminated myself from being taking seriously, for now I will be called a “birther.”
Simple, easy, but apparently also too hard a question for those self-serving talkers of the media elite, who with pride, call themselves “journalist.” So I’ll ask the really tough question:
Where is Mr. Obama’s official birth certificate?
James Michael Pratt is a New York Times bestselling novelist and non-fiction author, CEO of PowerThink Publishing, public speaker, Op Ed writer for The Daily Caller, and Founder of Reagan Revolution 2. His creative work may be reviewed at www.jmpratt.com. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org