This issue has waxed and waned over the two plus years since Mr. Obama was elected. It has flared up again after the newly elected governor of Hawaii, Neil Abercrombie, promised to find and display the "long form" birth certificate in order to stop all the questioning. He was stopped in his tracks in this project, first, by the failure to find the document easily, and then by privacy issues and the lack of a signed permission form saying it was OK to release the certificate. Most major conservative pundits have declined to join the fray over Mr. Obama's birth status. Many believe that Mr. Obama was indeed born in Hawaii. Some feel that the issue is a trap, designed to have an outcome that makes conservatives look stupid, that they will look foolish when the documents are released and there is nothing suspicious to report.
I have two opinions on Mr. Obama and his birth certificate. First, is that the media, the same media that demanded that John McCain make his roots known, demanding documentation of his birth status as a child of a traveling military man, has NOT made similar demands of Barack Obama. Furthermore the media has been eerily not interested in the fact that Mr. Obama is one of the least documented presidents since John F. Kennedy. In fact it was the revelation of Mr. Kennedy's Addison's Disease that started the trend of opening up records for public view by presidential wannabes. Gradually, we saw extensive educational and medical records of the people wanting to be POTUS. This tradition was maintained until the candidacy of Barack Obama. Where has the media been? Why haven't they made the same demands of Mr. Obama that they have made in the past of every president since JFK?
Secondly, the reluctance of the president to release records--not just the birth certificate--but many records that other presidents have opened up to public scrutiny without reservation makes it seem like he has something to hide. My favorite theory: He took financial aid as a foreign born student, coming from Indonesia, and is afraid to expose that fraud. The thing is there is no way to disprove this or any other speculation, in the absence of the documentation. So there is all sorts of goofy stuff out there. Absolutely my favorite goofy idea: Mr. Obama is actually the love child of his "mother's" father Stanley Dunham and an unknown Black woman. His daughter agreed to take in the baby as her own...see how nutty this can get?
The pressure to open up Mr. Obama's medical, school and birth records will ratchet up if and when he declares as a candidate for the 2012 presidential election. Some states are making the presentation of a valid long form birth certificate part of the process to get on the ballot in that state. Further, I believe that there are parts of the media that will not sit still for the false "fine-fine" of no school records and a one page health summary that worked for Mr. Obama in 2008.
So here is the punch line: open everything up Mr. President, every jot and tittle. If the worst that is revealed is that you cheated to get financial aid to go to school, I do believe that most Americans will forgive and be understanding of that. It is just that many are frustrated that you have less documentation open to the public then any president in 40 plus years. Give the permission needed to release the information.
The only scary thing to me is what if there is something worse hiding in those records? Something truly deceptive and damaging to the president? I truly hope not. Unlike a "birther", I will be truly happy to see nothing to report on in the president's record.
Then we can move onto more important issues like the economy and world issues.