“Birthers”, if you didn’t know, refers to people who think Barack Obama does not satisfy the “natural born citizen” requirement contained in the US Constitution and thus is ineligible to be President of the United States.
Some birthers think Obama was born in Kenya rather than Hawaii. They are not satisfied with Hawaii’s computerised print-out of the birth records the state holds – they want to see the “long form birth certificate”.
Others, realising they’re on a hiding to nothing with the Kenyan birth conspiracy, have gone “legal”. They point to US Code: 1401 (g) and savour their “gotcha” moment: As Mama Obama was only 18 at the time of Barack’s birth, she did not have sufficient post-14 years of age US residence to pass on her citizenship. Therefore, by their analysis, as Barack’s father was a Kenyan citizen and his mother was unable to pass on her American citizenship, Barack is not a natural born American citizen – and not eligible to be President of the United States.
On closer examination of 1401, our friends will see (g) only applies if the person was born outside the geographical limits of the United States and its outlying possessions. Born outside. If you accept baby Barack was born in Hawaii, (g) cannot apply.
This tallies with the Fourteenth Amendment of the US Constitution, which states: “All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside”. The plain meaning of these words should be self-explanatory.
The point of this is to show two things:
1) It’s true when they say that reading comprehension is just as important as knowing the law. You can’t apply the law to the facts properly if you’ve misunderstood one or the other (or both); and
2) Never, ever assume the other guy knows the law. Look it up yourself.