Just the Facts . . .

obama-acceptance

Now that the US Presidential Election is over and much of the campaign dust has settled, I would like to talk about the constant stream of ad-hominem sewage that has accompanied our president-elect’s run for the White House and that’s been circulated widely throughout the Christian communities.

There are many Christian believers who profoundly disagree with Barack Obama’s politics and his moral priorities. There are even more who were and are wary of his religious, national, and international affiliations. There are a few whose racial and ethnic hatreds prevent them from seeing him as an acceptable candidate for any US public office.

America’s a free-speech, freedom of association country, and folks have a right to their own views, choices, preferences, and belief systems. I get that.

What I don’t get are the rumors, slander, libelous statements, hate mail, distortions, misrepresentations, and outright lies that comprise the torrent of anti-Barack-Obama urban legends that continue to circulate freely throughout the Christian Internet and even in mainstream Christian communities. Why are we doing this?

For Example, here is just one small excerpt of seriously distorted comments being circulated among local Christians and/or retrieved from either their e-mails or discussions:

“…He is Asian, not African American. I do not think he is a naturalized citizen, and he is Muslim. He was born in Kenya and he just told George Stephanopholus the other day that he was Muslim from his youth?? He never entered the US until like age 6…”

“…There are tapes available with his own grandmother saying she was proud of the son that was born in Kenya, to quote ” I was so proud of him as I watched him being born in Kenya”. You see, our media moguls have more stuff hidden than what was revealed…” [It’s not clear from this comment, if it is accurate, whether the grandmother was talking about her son or her grandson] (Anonymously posted, to protect the guilty)

So what are the Facts about his citizenship, national, and ethnic origins?

Barack Obama was born at the Kapi’olani Medical Center for Women & Children in Honolulu, Hawaii, to Barack Hussein Obama, Sr., a Luo from Nyang’oma Kogelo, Nyanza Province, Kenya, and Ann Dunham, a white American from Wichita, Kansas of mainly English, Irish and smaller amounts of German descent. His parents met in 1960 while attending the University of Hawaii at Manoa, where his father was a foreign student. The couple married February 2, 1961; they separated when Obama was two years old and subsequently divorced in 1964. Obama’s father returned to Kenya and saw his son only once more before dying in an automobile accident in 1982.

After her divorce, Dunham married Lolo Soetoro, and the family moved to Soetoro’s home country of Indonesia in 1967, where Obama attended local schools, such as Asisi, in Jakarta until he was ten years old. He then returned to Honolulu to live with his maternal grandparents while attending Punahou School from the fifth grade in 1971 until his graduation from high school in 1979. Obama’s mother returned to Hawaii in 1972 for several years, and then in 1977 went back to Indonesia, where she worked as an anthropological field worker. She stayed there most of the rest of her life, returning to Hawaii in 1994. She died of ovarian cancer in 1995.

The Facts about his religious history:

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