AT 1MIN 1SEC – 1MIN 3 SECWhat do you think?
Pay close attention to his ears poking out, the shape of his nose, and skin color.
Obama would have been 32 years old at the time.. (Obama’s birthday 8/4/1961)
None of the pics and/or video were altered. This is an observation. This is not meant to be derogatory or inflammatory.
Pay attention @ 1:01 the dude with the shades and hat. This is crazy!
I don’t think it is, but it would be quite a story if it was him in the video…Obama does like rap music, and if you remember, Jay-Z was recently at the WH, sitting down in the Situation Room. Obama also met with Ludacris before becoming President
More reason to suspect President Obama isn’t who he says he is, or is the coolest president since Andrew Jackson. A hot Internet rumor claims the leader of the free world had a cameo role in a 1993 video by hip-hop group Tag Team for their song “Whoomp (There it is).” Check it out.For the moment, let’s just say the alleged Obama figure pops up in the video about 1:01 into the song. It’s quick, so watch closely, but the image is clear.
The fact that — we’ll say the guy — appears in the video and then gets a close up, makes it suspiciously seem like the producer/videographer knew he was somebody special.
Of course, the video was shot in 1993. Obama had recently graduated from Harvard Law School. The presidency was still a sparkle in his eye.
Adrian Chen at Gawker:
This is not the observation of just one random Internet weirdo. Other Internet weirdos have come to the same conclusion, including posters on the hip hop message board Tha Corner, the message board SomethingAwful and the Tea Party website Tennessee Sons of Liberty. The latter wrote: “This is an observation. This is not meant to be derogatory or inflammatory.” Yeah, just randomly noticing that Obama was in this RAP video. But so what? As far as musical infractions go, Obama committed a much graver one by listing Sheryl Crow as one of his favorite acts.
But is it really Obam’s flashy grin? Consider the evidence:
- It really really looks like him!
- Obama has a well-documented fondness for hip hop. He likes Kanye West and Ludacris.
- Obama has a history of hip hop cameos. In 2008, reports said he was featured on an upcoming Q-Tip track. Though Q-Tip ended up simply sampling one of his speeches.
- As one commenter on SomethingAwful noted: The man in the video is playing dominoes with his left hand. BARACK OBAMA IS ALSO LEFT HANDED!
- The video was released in 1993. Barack would have been around 31 when it was filmed, a year or two out of Harvard Law. Seems like something cool that our coolest, cigarette-smoking, hoops-shooting future president would do as an early 30-something.
- But, actually, by 1993, Obama was deeply involved in community activism in Chicago. In 1992, Obama famously helped boost voter turnout among blacks through his tireless organizing. How would Obama had the time to film this video? And why the hell would the director of Tag Team’s video seek out a notable community organizer to play a domino player? Maybe they were buddies from Harvard or something.
- Also, Tag Team is from Atlanta. If Obama wanted to make his rap video debut, wouldn’t he have chosen an early-90s act from his beloved Chicago? Maybe Da Brat, or Crucial Conflict? And he would obviously be wearing a Bulls hat—not a Compton one.
- Most of these conspiracy theorists base their observation on a low-quality YouTube version of the video. Take a look at this screenshot from a higher-quality video: Doesn’t look much like him, actually. Also: earrings? Obama is cool, but not that cool.
- Finally, if this was actually true, Sarah Palin would have already done five Facebook wall-posts about it, and Glenn Beck would have already run a weeklong special on the fact that our President appeared in a music video which appears to celebrate so-called “Party people.”Sorry, Internet, it’s not Obama. But as far as conspiracy theories go, it’s way better than that whole secret Muslim thing.
Wow, this is a dumb song! And, well, it’s very unlikely this guy (who doesn’t even look much like Obama, wtf people?) is Barack Obama. WHY YOU ASK? Because Barack Obama was, by 1993, a law professor and author and civil rights lawyer and director of regional political organizations, and probably wasn’t spending a whole lot of time as an extra in hip-hop videos. But this is a very big thing on the Internet, right now! We especially like the bit from National Review Online’s black-outreach blog, “Tha Corner.”
Over 200,000 people have read our original post; thousands of other outlets picked it up. CNN actually asked the White House for a comment. They “did not immediately respond.” A suspicious silence! And Obama’s potential cameo is now in the Wikipedia entry for “Whoomp (There it is)” which means it is a true fact for all of eternity. Pandora’s box has been opened, and the Whoomper Conspiracy will probably never die: Says commenter patlippert “I won’t believe it’s not him until he shows us his resume, which if he did and it proved me wrong, I’ll claim it was faked.”Even after we debunked it, readers flexed their paranoid muscles. Many agreed that it wasn’t Obama, but then spun that into a premise for an entirely new conspiracy theory! Heywhat thinks this was all a publicity ploy by the real extra. Tamara C said in an email that screencap above “looks digitally altered to look more like Obama… Is that possible? And if so, why?” WHOOMP: There is how you turn a conspiracy theory about Obama into one about people who hate Obama. Some thought the entire thing was a conspiracy of racists. Wrote Bearsvillemusic: “So, this is essentially an article saying that all black people like the same. Brilliant.”
Others still believe. (We’ll call them “Whoompers,” per OrneryBabe’s suggestions) We argued that a high-quality version of the video showed the man didn’t really look like Obama at all. But ShruitBorus accused us of masterminding a coverup: “Funny how one of your affiliated sites had a post about how internet video degrades over repeated use. Just setting the stage for your debunking of this video?” And CID_VICIOUS eviscerated our assumption that a cash-strapped, 31 year-old Obama wouldn’t have taken time out of his schedule for the shoot… and a quick payday: “That video was almost certainly shot in one day – I’ve been in a few dozen. So Barack could have gotten a call from a friend, ‘hey, you want to make a hundred bucks and be on a music video?’”
While the most enthusiastic Whoomper, Ismith, offered biblical proof of Obama’s role in the video:
Revelations 3:45: “And the anti-Christ will appear in a music video reaching the masses. It shall tell the masses to shake their derrieres. And thus will begin Armageddon”
Clearly, there is only one way to definitively debunk Obama’s cameo: Find the real domino-playing extra. The director of the video is one VJ Beedles. His Google footprint is tiny (suspicious!) but he was apparently once the assistant scoutmaster of Boy Scout Troop 2020 in Atlanta. We’ll reach out to the troop, but if anyone ideas for how to reach Beedle, send them along.
Whoomp (The truth is out there).