by David P. Bell on Jun 13, 2018 Uncategorized
For that reason, the birth certificate becomes the first object most people own. Bound up in official identity and personal relationships, its stakes are high. Doubting the accuracy or provenance of a birth certificate can cause shock waves that ripple out to years or even decades later. The "birther" conspiracy during Barack Obama's first presidential candidacy is a notable example. Donald Trump and others claimed that Barack Obama hadn't been born in the United States and thus was ineligible for the presidency. The birth certificate is a battleground for debates about parentage, gender, identity, and governmental responsibility.
Other types of identity point out how arbitrary certain labels and designations are. One of these is race, which is marked on some birth certificates. Vivian Morris was born in 1969 in Montgomery, Alabama__the town where Rosa Parks famously refused to move to the back of the bus. On Morris's birth certificate, her Korean mother was listed as white. At the time, there weren't standard racial categories to choose from, and registration officials had more say.