Wednesday, February 24, 2010

The Birther State

You expect insanity out of certain state legislatures. The capitol buildings in Georgia, Florida, and South Carolina are full of the kinds of people who have rapture wills, for example. Who knew Arizona would elbow its way onto that list? Not content with being known as the go-to destination for tacky turquoise jewelry and sweat lodge manslaughter, Arizona is trying to forge its own crown as the birther state. Nearly half of its state legislators (all Republicans) have approved a bill that would force presidential candidates to prove their place of birth to the state before being allowed on the ballot. This is because they're pretty sure Barack Obama's parents entered into a secret conspiracy with Hawaiian hospitals and newspapers to create the false impression that the President was born on U.S. soil. There's no evidence for this, of course, but there's also no evidence that Arizona is a place you'd ever want to visit, despite what its tourism board would have you believe. The bill's sponsor, State Rep. Judy Burges, says this is no different than an employer demanding to see a job applicant's birth certificate. But the thing is, almost no employers do that. And the ones that do are almost always baby footprint fetishists. More details here.