Today marks Barack Obama’s 61st birthday, so it’s only natural for people to look at the good and bad aspects of his tenure as a former US president. Before and during his presidency, Obama was also the subject of amusing conspiracy theories.
Given his mixed ethnicity, conservative Republicans started all kinds of rumors during his campaign. And when he became America’s first black president, haters kept exaggerating his impact on the Oval Office.
Obama’s plan for the Islamic States of America
Barack Hussein Obama did not hesitate to talk about his middle name. His father Barack Obama Sr inherited the name Hussein from his own father who had converted from Catholicism to Islam. But as far as Barack Obama’s own religious views are concerned, he was a Protestant Christian. That hasn’t stopped conspiracy theorists from suggesting that Obama is a die-hard Muslim who even secretly took his oath as president on the Koran!
Jewish political commentator Avi Lipkin went so far as to say he feared Obama because he would invade Israeli Jews and start a new Holocaust. How exactly? In a now-deleted YouTube video, Lipkin claimed Obama would bring 100 million Muslims to America by the end of his second term, creating the Islamic State of America. Then this militia of Sunni Muslims would then be used to march on Israel and destroy it!
Married to a Pakistani
The common tendency among conservative conspiracy theorists in America is to label a person a Muslim, a pedophile, a devil worshiper, or a homosexual. Obama has also fallen prey to such claims, with some overstating his relationship with a Pakistani man named Sal Maqbool. Obama and Maqbool were roommates during their Harvard days. Sharing an apartment in Harlem, Obama referenced Maqbool in his memoir Dreams of my father like an easy-going friend, drug addict and party animal.
Jérôme Corsi, conspiracy theorist and correspondent for the far-right fake news platform WorldNetDaily, posted a video (now deleted) claiming that photos where the two friends are visibly close and buddies can be considered strong evidence of Obama’s homosexuality! Other commentators were quick to point out that Obama had been wearing a gold ring on his finger for several years (other than his wedding band). A gay alliance, that’s what those theories suggested!
Caused Hurricane Sandy
Hurricane Sandy was one of America’s most destructive hurricanes, causing $68 billion in damage. As the hurricane took place in 2012 when Obama was still president, the website of far-right radio personality Alex Jones was quick to suggest that Obama was the only one to have caused the hurricane so that disaster relief efforts can maintain its popularity.
Ignoring all weather possibilities, it was blatantly claimed that Obama had access to a secret Pentagon project that could manipulate the weather and that the evil President was cooking up his own storm. It looks like something straight out of a sci-fi disaster movie.
Americans hypnotized to vote for him
Propagated by conservative political commentator Rush Limbaugh and even Republican candidates in Georgia, there is a popular theory that calls Obama a master hypnotist. Specifically, he was a master of “neurolinguistic programming” and used subliminal messages in his campaign speeches to attract voters.
Previously, all kinds of leaders have been accused of being master hypnotists, ranging from Adolf Hitler to John F Kennedy to Martin Luther King Jr.
Porn star mom and communist dad
As reported in publications like Uproxx, a scandalous DVD was sent to several voters in several US states during the last year of Obama’s first term. Likely an attempt to demotivate voters from electing him for a second term, the video included an exaggerated voiceover (claiming it’s Obama) that made big claims like Obama’s mother posing nude for pornographic magazines even when she was pregnant with him.
It’s not enough. Without any solid photographic evidence, the creators of the video also add that her mother posed with other women, proving that she was also a lesbian! Neither Obama’s biological Kenyan father nor his Indonesian stepfather was mentioned in the video. Instead, labor activist and journalist Frank Marshall Davis was reportedly her biological father and mentor. The video added that Davis taught Obama everything about Marxism, wanting him to spread the Marxist agenda throughout the country.
All the savage conspiracy theories aside, Obama remains an American president that millennials identify with perhaps the most (given that his successor was Donald Trump).