I had written on these pages (which I will correct as soon as I finish this) that the State of Hawaii had a law that allows Hawaiian residents to register infants born out of state. I cited the law, which I found on a State web site:

[§338-17.8] Certificates for children born out of State.

(a) Upon application of an adult or the legal parents of a minor child, the director of health shall issue a birth certificate for such adult or minor, provided that proof has been submitted to the director of health that the legal parents of such individual while living without the Territory or State of Hawaii had declared the Territory or State of Hawaii as their legal residence for at least one year immediately preceding the birth or adoption of such child.

(b) Proof of legal residency shall be submitted to the director of health in any manner that the director shall deem appropriate. The director of health may also adopt any rules pursuant to chapter 91 that he or she may deem necessary or proper to prevent fraudulent applications for birth certificates and to require any further information or proof of events necessary for completion of a birth certificate.

(c) The fee for each application for registration shall be established by rule adopted pursuant to chapter 91. [L 1982, c 182, §1]

I thought I was TOUGH STUFF for finding this, that is, until someone pointed out that little “L 1982” indicating that the law wasn’t passed until 1982, a couple of decades after Obama was born.

I’m so embarrassed!

About Kevin

Just an old guy with opinions that I like to bounce off other people.
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17 Responses to ERROR! ERROR!

  1. TRUTH says:

    We all make errors. I’d sure never have caught it.

    And excuse my ignorance, but what does that law mean one way or another? Even though it was not passed until 82, what does it mean now, in short english, that it didn’t in 61?

  2. Kevin says:

    People claim that anybody can register a child in Hawaii, born there or not, so the Hawaiian Birth Certificate Obama showed doesn’t PROVE he was born in Hawaii.

    In fact a Hawaiian resident can register the out of state birth of their child. BUT the law that allows that wasn’t passed until 1982, so a foreign-born Obama couldn’t have been registered under that law in 1961.

    Therefore if Obama is registered in Hawaii, he must have been born there, and if you believe the Director of the Hawaii Department of Health and the Registrar of Vital Statistics, Obama is registered in Hawaii.

  3. se says:

    Kevin wrote:

    I thought I was TOUGH STUFF…

    Don’t be so hard on yourself. You manned up and owned up to the error. That’s more than can be said for a lot of people. So you’re still tough in my book. 😉


  4. Kevin says:


    Thanks for the kind comment.

    Life is so very much simpler when you train yourself to make telling the truth your first impulse.

  5. Bill says:

    I thought Hawaii had a similar law at the time Obama was born.

    If it was the case could you retroactively change the birthplace to Hawaii? It doesn’t seem likely, but I don’t know.

  6. Kevin says:

    No law ever let you “change your birthplace” to a place where you weren’t born. Also Hawaiian law requires changed birth certificates to be clearly marked so.

    As for any former law, unless someone finds it, I will assume there is none.

  7. Bill says:

    I read it on one of the OCD blogs, I forget which one now.
    There are a lot of assertions reported as facts and it is difficult to track every one of them down.

    A number of people have pointed out the fact that if you adopt a child from out of state you can get
    a birth certificate for them in your home state. I would presume that such a birth certificate would indicate the true birthplace or say something about adoption.

  8. Bill says:

    “When Hawaii became a state in 1959, there were many people who resided there who did not have a birth certificate. From 1911 to 1972, in Hawaii a person — over the age of one — whose birth was not registered — could apply for a short form birth certificate in Hawaii.”

    I found this here:

    No backup for the assertion.

  9. Kevin says:

    There seems to be this fantasy that somehow you can game the vital records system and get birth certificates that say things that are not true. That’s silly on the face of it. When a state issues a document certifying something, they take care that what they are certifying is true.

    The only exceptions are birth certificates issued for people in the “witness protection program” where they really do make up totally fake birth certificates with the cooperation of the states.

    In Hawaii today (since 1979), it is possible to adopt a foreign-born child, register the birth, and get a birth certificate. However, the law says: “The new certificate of birth shall show the true or probable foreign country of birth, and that the certificate is not evidence of United States citizenship for the child for whom it is issued or for the adoptive parents.”

    In any case it would be impossible for an adoption to have been completed in the 4 days between the date Barack Obama was born and the date his birth was registered.

  10. Bill says:

    I think the adoption gambit is just used as an analogy-to show that it is possible to get a birth certificate for somebody born out of state.

    There seems to be a presumption that the state of Hawaii maintains two databases, one that holds the information that they print on your short firm birth certificate and another “true” database that holds the secret information from your original “vault” birth certificate.

    Or maybe that there is just one database that has never been checked against the original documents.

    In either case it defies common sense.

  11. Kevin says:

    While I cannot speak specifically for Hawaii, there are generally multiple versions of some birth certificates in state VR databases–not two databases, but different records in one database, because certificates do change over time, for example in the case of a legal name change, or an affidavit of paternity or an adoption. Some of the records may be sealed, particularly in the case of adoptions. It may the case that previous versions of certificates are sealed when the change is made. Sealed records are not visible to non-supervisory personnel at the agency.

    However, changes are not made for the fun of it and they do not change “true” information into “false” information. Changes are always made under legal authority. Unless someone provided documentation of an error, things like Mother’s Name, place of birth and date of birth do not change. Father’s name is something that does change. In Hawaii, state law requires the certified copy to say “ALTERED” in the case of a change.

    I think most if not all states retain the original paper documents, or else they maintain microfilm copies of them. This is what Hawaii Department of Health officials looked at and verified.

  12. Bill says:

    Of course, one database with multiple versions, that makes more sense.

    The conspiracy theorists are asking us to believe that the stateo f Hawaii has two versions in their records, one with a foreign birthplace and one with a false Hawaiian birthplace.

    I suppose it cannot be absolutely ruled out, as human error cannot be ruled out. So where does the burden of proof lie? Obama has produced a legitimate birth certificate from Hawaii, now he is expected prove that the information on it is true. If the original paper copy of his birth certificate is produced, what is the betting that the conspiracy theorists would challenge it too, and declare it a fake and require even more proof?

  13. Kevin says:

    Human error is possible, but since the Director of the Hawaii Department of Health and the Registrar of Vital Statistics looked at the record and put out a press release on the State Department of Health web site that the original record was filed according to state law, that implies to me that there were no errors in the filing and that the computer record matches the paper (or microfilm) record (since that is what the law requires).

    By definition, conspiracy theorists dismiss evidence that contradicts their views.

    If Obama ever walked into court and was asked to prove his birth place, all he would have to do is hand the clerk that certificate that we have all seen and that would be all the proof he need supply. End of story.

    Hawaii Law: §338-12 Evidentiary character of certificates. Certificates filed within thirty days after the time prescribed therefor shall be prima facie evidence of the facts therein stated. (and §338-13 Copies of the contents of any certificate on file in the department, certified by the department shall be considered for all purposes the same as the original,)

    In common law jurisdictions, prima facie denotes evidence that (unless rebutted) would be sufficient to prove a particular proposition or fact.

  14. sus says:

    Yeah… i looked that up. But, it said “Born in Hawaii”. To register people who were born in Hawaii that hadn’t been registered.

    “Who is Eligible to Apply for the Issuance of a Late Birth Certificate in Lieu of a Certificate of Hawaiian Birth?

    The Certificate of Hawaiian Birth program was established in 1911, during the territorial era, to register a person born in Hawaii who was one year old or older and whose birth had not been previously registered in Hawaii. The Certificate of Hawaiian Birth Program was terminated in 1972, during the statehood era.”

    There you have it. Unless his mother had some evil plan way back when? Will they ever let it go?

  15. Kevin says:

    And of course Barack Obama was registered when he was 4 days old, totally eliminating the Certificate of Hawaiian Birth thing.

    The smearbots in some articles I read try to make the unsuspecting reader think that a “Certificate of Hawaiian Birth” means you were born in Hawaii (true) but that a Certification of Live Birth only proves that you were born (false). Both say where you were born.

    I’ve never seen an image of a Certificate of Hawaiian Birth, but I’ll bet it is easily distinguished.

  16. Bill says:

    I totally agree with your analysis, I’m just trying to think through the objections the smearbots come up with.

  17. Kevin says:

    The smearbots are constrained neither by truth nor reason, nor morality. How can you guess where that will lead?

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