Article by guest author Tony Nugent, retired religion professor and symbologist who has co-authored articles with me about origins of Mormonism and Christianity.
The current political alliance between President Trump and Roy Moore isn’t new – their collusion goes back at least to 2011.
It was then that the two teamed up to promote the “Birther Lie” that President Obama was not born in the USA. They served as active and vocal leaders of this racist cause over the five-year period from 2011 to 2016.
President Obama’s short form and long form birth certificates were released by the Dept. of Health of the State of Hawaii, in June 2008 and April 2011 respectively. The birth records show that Barack Hussein Obama II was born at 7:24 pm on August 4, 1961, in the Kapiolani Maternity & Gynecological Hospital in Honolulu, to Stanley Ann Dunham Obama and Barack Hussein Obama.
In the face of this documentary evidence, many early “Birthers” gave up the cause. But not Trump and Moore. They relentlessly promoted the lie, claiming in public speeches and interviews that they were privy to inside information that these birth certificates were forgeries.
Moore, who began his involvement in the cause in 2008, declared to World Net Daily in 2010 that there was “substantial evidence that Obama was not born in our country.” Trump, who didn’t publicly join the cause until 2011, tweeted on August 6, 2012 that “an ‘extremely credible source’ has called my office and told me that Barack Obama’s birth certificate is a fraud.”
Moore’s “substantial evidence” and Trump’s “extremely credible source” never, of course, materialized.
Moore combined his birther claims with the Islamophobic lie that Obama was secretly a Muslim, while Trump cleverly used the lie in his Presidential campaigns of 2012 and 2016 to solidify the nationalist, racist, anti-Obama core of his base.
The political effectiveness of the Birther Lie can be seen in the results of the NBC poll of September 2016. In the responses by registered Republicans only 28% agreed with the statement that “Barack Obama was born in the United States.” Another 41% disagreed, and 31% stated that they didn’t know one way or the other. The Birther Lie appears to have sowed doubt about the President being born in the U.S., and thus the legitimacy of his Presidency, among nearly three-quarters of registered Republicans.
Trump officially gave up the “Birther Lie” on Sept. 16, 2016, with Moore doing so 3 months later. When Trump gave up the lie, however, he replaced it with another one – naming his opponent Hillary Clinton as the originator of the whole birther idea, again of course without any evidence. And now, in late 2017, Trump has apparently decided to revive the lie, letting people around him know that he still believes it.
The “Birther Lie” shows us that Trump and Moore are inveterate liars. So why should we believe them when they completely deny the credible testimonies of the more than 21 women who accuse one or the other of these men of sexual molesting them? Once again, these “birther buddies” would like us to ignore credible evidence and believe more of their big fat lies.
Guest author Tony Nugent is a symbologist, an expert in ancient symbols. He taught at Seattle University for fifteen years in the Department of Theology and Religious Studies and is an ordained Presbyterian minister.