Of all the criticisms and arguments against the current occupant of the Oval Office, the one I cringe every time it raises its ugly head is the claim that somehow Barack Obama is unfit for the presidency because he is not a natural born American citizen. Argue what you will, but the guy was elected by the people, lives in the White House, and flies around on Air Force One. If you hear a brass band playing “Hail to the Chief”, The One is most likely in the immediate vicinity. Give it up people. Barack Obama is the President of the United States – for at least another two very long years.

Thus you can imagine my cringe when I came across the headline “Leading Republican claims Barack Obama grew up in Kenya” I thought to myself, “what kind of wing nut is bringing up this useless tirade this time. Surely it has to be some fringe whack job.” Then I found my predilections to be correct. The “leading republican” was none other than former Arkansas governor, wanna-be presidential contender, and current bass plucking Fox News talking head Mike Huckabee.

My sitemeter rated fourteen regular readers will know there is no love lost between me and the former Arkansas governor. I didn’t like him much as a candidate in the 2008 cycle. Yeah, he’s folksy and has a knack for whipping off some good one-liners on the debate stage, but seriously folks – his idea of national economic stimulus was to widen I-95 from Miami to Maine. His support base is broad but not deep and frankly I won’t vote for him under any circumstances.

But I digress.

Huck went on New York radio on Monday and basically stated that because Obama grew up in Kenya his world view isn’t as American as it should be. Now we can argue about Obama’s formative years, but the fact remains that he didn’t visit Kenya until after his undergraduate years. He did spend some time living in Indonesia as a young boy. Maybe the Arkansas public school system maps don’t cover Africa and Asia. Maybe Huck can’t tell the difference.

Children don’t get much of a choice as to where they are raised. For nearly all of my formative years my home address was dictated by people working in a five sided government building in Arlington, Virginia. I spent three years traipsing around Europe and one year riding my big wheel down the streets of Seoul, South Korea. After finishing my first year of college, I spent two years living and working in the sprawling metropolis of São Paulo, Brasil. By Mike Huckabee’s own ethnocentric definition, my world-view must be drastically different from that of an “average American”.

Mike Huckabee has always been principally and foremost about Mike Huckabee. He’ll let the 2012 presidential rumors swirl until he has to make a no doubt public and drawn out decision as to whether or not to run. To this end he’ll take whatever opportunity to keep his name in the headlines and generate as much earned media as possible. This is a fine strategy when the coverage is relevant and worthwhile. Sadly, the only thing Huck is doing by perpetuating this kind of crap is reinforcing the stereotype of an angry white male republican who’s lone beef with the current president is that he spent some time overseas as a child.

Memo to Huck: Stick to your Fox show, Mike. Or, better yet, just go away.

Comments