Born in the U.S.A. (Part I)

As I was researching this broad topic for The Debate, I found a fair bit of opposition to the policy of bestowing citizenship on anyone born on U.S. soil.

The automatic citizenship idea comes from a clause in the 14th amendment that reads:

All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside.

P.A. Madison writes that "and subject to the jurisdiction thereof" requires that United States have complete jurisdiction over parents of baby at time of birth in order for that baby to be a citizen. If the U.S. government cannot "compel a child's parents to Jury Duty," for example, "then the U.S. does not have the total, complete jurisdiction demanded by the Fourteenth Amendment to make their child a citizen of the United States by birth. How could it possibly be any other way?"

Couldn't "and subject to the jurisdiction thereof" mean that they can't have been born here but then later renounced their citizenship or took up citizenship in another country, whereby they would then be subject to that country's jurisdiction. Of course, if a pregnant woman was giving birth in the United States and she somehow committed a crime in the process, she'd be subject to U.S. jurisdiction. While she is in this country, she is subject to U.S. jurisdiction. When the baby arrives, the baby is also subject to U.S. jurisdiction.

A related interpretation is that only those born on U.S. soil "of parents not owing allegiance to any foreign sovereignty." So, permanent residents, too bad for your kids. This interpretation would mean that the U.S.-born child of a U.S. citizen and a U.S. permanent resident who happens to be a British citizen would not qualify for U.S. citizenship because one parent has an allegiance to a foreign government.

Many opponents of automatic citizenship point to the statements made when the amendment was up for debate, indicating that the original intent of the amendment was to exclude those born of foreign parents.

Intent is a big consideration, but that can cut both ways. Remember, the whole point of the 14th Amendment was to expand citizenship rights, not to further restrict them. Given that, does it make sense that the definition of a citizen should become more narrow with the adoption of this amendment?

Debaters, your thoughts on the 14th Amendment's citizenship clause?

By Emily Messner |  March 30, 2006; 9:55 AM ET  | Category:  National Politics
Previous: Immigrants' Attitudes on Immigration | Next: Born in the U.S.A. (Part II)

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A Mexican woman becomes pregnant by a Mexican man. Neither has ever so much as been to the United States. Three months before she's to give birth, the woman crosses the border illegally, and later gives birth to the child at a U.S. hospital.

This baby has zero right, moral or legal, to U.S. citizenship. None. The baby's parents are Mexican citizens, and so is the baby.

Not that complicated.

Posted by: DC Dude | March 30, 2006 10:27 AM

Illegal immigrants come in, have children, and those kids become citizens, and we're obligated to provide them with social services and schooling?

Sorry, no.

Posted by: Taniwha | March 30, 2006 10:54 AM

One of the things that has facilitated immigrant assimilation in the U.S. is this interpretation of the 14th Amendment that allows those who are born here to be citizens by birth. If you look at the immigrant problems in Europe now, a large part of the issue involves the notion of citizenship. If you are born in Germany to parents who are not German, you are not a citizen, but can apply for citizenship when you turn 18. This creates a separated population. For those immgrants whose children are born here and are thus American citizens, there is a connection to America that the individual born in Germany will never have. We are a nation of immigrants, the question is not whether you came from somewhere else, but when you got here. Many who came during the early years of the American republic could have been considered illegal, but became a part of America.

Many who are now discussion the issue of immigration also have no historical perspective. We had this discussion in the mid 1980s, and legislation - the Simpson-Mazzoli Act, was passed in 1986. This is why you now complete an I-9 form when you get a job, the form was supposed to help employers hire people who had the legal right to work in the U.S. It also gave amnesty to those who were here illegally and could prove 5 years of residence and employment. It was touted at the time as the solution to the problem of illegal immigration. Apparently, the solution did nothing to solve the problem.

Posted by: PSciDoc | March 30, 2006 10:58 AM

The real issue in my opinion is illegal immigrants who are allowed to stay. When someone is born here, I feel citizenship should be granted, assuming the parents are citizens or residents with intent to stay. Babies shouldn't be used as an anchor.

The reason I argue for the children of legal residents to become citizens is from the standpoint of sense of identity and loyalty. A year before I was born, my parents and older sisters moved here from the UK. Had I not been granted citizenship, I would have no sense of what that means. I have a fondness for England, but nothing that borders on my feelings towards this country. Had I not had that citizenship to start with, I feel I would most likely never have had this loyalty. American civic pride would never have been instilled in me as I wouldn't have been a citizen. Being here would have been under no choice of my own, so I wouldn't have even had the choice my parents and sisters had had to move here in the first place.

Posted by: Freedom | March 30, 2006 11:18 AM

What assimilation? Even those born here were marching in LA waving the Mexican flag, barely speak any English, etc...

There's an intentional LACK of assimilation.

Posted by: T | March 30, 2006 11:25 AM

Emily wrote:
===========================================
A related interpretation is that only those born on U.S. soil "of parents not owing allegiance to any foreign sovereignty." So, permanent residents, too bad for your kids. This interpretation would mean that the U.S.-born child of a U.S. citizen and a U.S. permanent resident who happens to be a British citizen would not qualify for U.S. citizenship because one parent has an allegiance to a foreign government.
===========================================

Yes! Yes! Yes!

Because a person can't be faithful to two masters. If you are loyal to another country other than the US, you should make a decision to be a US or foreign citizn -- not both.

SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | March 30, 2006 11:41 AM

PSciDoc wrote:
===========================================
If you look at the immigrant problems in Europe now, a large part of the issue involves the notion of citizenship. If you are born in Germany to parents who are not German, you are not a citizen, but can apply for citizenship when you turn 18.
===========================================

Or one parent is a US citizen and the other a German citizen. My nephews will have to make that decision when they're 18 as well.

The Germans also have a "German First" hiring policy. Jobs have to go first for German citizens. Only when those jobs can't be filled can foreign workers be hired.

We need that policy here -- if our lily livered politicos would grow a backbone.

SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | March 30, 2006 11:46 AM

PSciDoc - "We are a nation of immigrants, the question is not whether you came from somewhere else, but when you got here."

PC tripe. We are all immigrants based on "Mitochondrial Eve". The mantra we all all One, with a Borderless Globe, all immigrants with the right of each of the 6.5 billion of us to work, settle where we please - is happy talk drivel. That fatuous argument assumes Americans ultimately having no more right to their own country they built - than for a Japanese to want Japan to stay Japanese facing an invasion Armada...err immigration Armada from Bangladesh 15 years from now. Because all Japanese in fact "all immigrants themselves" from about 3,000 years ago and they should cheer the end of Japan in the name of global diversity...That won't happen. Nor can PolSciDoc just show up as an immigrant demanding to be made an Australian, an Emirati, or Chinese. Or as a "internationalist, globalist citizen" cross into Mexico and do real estate ventures and property acquisition South of the Border without permission and special papers. Defy Mexico's sovereignity and the Mexicans will arrest you in a heartbeat.

***********************

The practice of claiming a livebirth to an illegal legitimizes any illegal and confers lifetime immunity from deportation on Pedro and Juanita to avoid "punishing" the CHILD, the poor wee AMERICAN CHILD - is called "Anchor Babying it".

It is worse than just anchor babies, because the currently accepted magic transformation of an illegal parent from illegal to "vital support for a new American citizen" also triggers "family reunification" - which is 60-65% of net immigration into the USA - meaning the spouse of the illegal, parents, brothers, sisters all can come in, and those people can become sponsors so another family or a whole village for supporting the "little jihadi or nina" can happen.

A story - ostensibly an American success story - was done on how a Yemeni engineer on a student visa married an American back in the 70s, but in 35 years he and his relatives had managed to move their entire inter-related tribe of some 800 people from a small village 60Km from Sana - all over to the Detroit Metro area and with good health care and sanitation, manage to breed their tribe up to over 2400 people and have the wealth to build their own Mosque and chapter of Hamas supporters.

*********************

Freedom - "Had I not had that citizenship to start with, I feel I would most likely never have had this loyalty."

If you had been instead a legal resident and allowed to become a naturalized citizen at age 12 or 16 - assuming you could speak passable English, pass a citizenship test, and were sponsored as a fine potential new citizen, I think your loyalty would have been even greater. We treasure something earned more than that which is given, and care for something given certainly more than something demanded as an entitlement or "moral right".

Posted by: Chris Ford | March 30, 2006 11:54 AM

What's wrong with citizenship for children born to legal immigrants, but not to illegal immigrants?

You can't legally win the lottery with tickets that were stolen from a store... why should you be allowed to gain citizenship via crime?

Posted by: T | March 30, 2006 11:54 AM

Good topic, Emily.

One thing to look at for comparison's sake: The United States is one of the only countries in the world with birthright citizenship. Ireland had such a policy until very recently. They were having a problem with lots of pregnant women from the developing world going to Ireland to give birth so their kid would have Irish and European Union citizenship.

This was both morally offensive, and a drain on the Irish healthcare system. So Ireland fixed the problem: it abolished birthright citizenship.

Perhaps we should have the same debate they had.

Posted by: Virginia Dare | March 30, 2006 11:56 AM

One more thing: This topic is much more in play than most people realize. The Supreme Court has never actually held that a child born to illegal alien parents is automatically a US citizen.

Similarly, birthright citizenship was a side issue in the Hamdi case. (remember him?). Hamdi was born in Louisiana to Saudi parents, and grew up in Saudi Arabia. He fought against the United States in Afghanistan, and was captured. Because of his birth, it was thought that he should receive the same rights as regular American citizens. Weird, huh?

Posted by: Virginia Dare | March 30, 2006 12:01 PM

Ford:
That is a possibility, but I find it less likely than in the case of an immigrant moving here. I have spent time living in both England and America. As someone seen as an 'American,' I was treated differently and was less included in national holidays etc, as well as in discussion of politics and about the country. While I like England, I never felt as if I fit in and was apart of the country, or truly a citizen. Based on how I have seen other non-citizens treated in America, at least at a young age, I am willing to suggest the same might be said here. It is one thing to choose to move here and become a citizen. It is another to be born here without it.

Posted by: Freedom | March 30, 2006 12:11 PM

Citizenship for a child born of legal residents? yes.

Illegal? No.

Posted by: D. | March 30, 2006 12:18 PM

SandyK writes:
"Yes! Yes! Yes!

Because a person can't be faithful to two masters. If you are loyal to another country other than the US, you should make a decision to be a US or foreign citizn -- not both."

I suggest you read Emily's paragraph again. This proposition would not eliminate people with dual citizenship. America as a nation does not recognize other citizenships. However, England counts me among their citizens. Under this proposition, my children would still be considered American citizens.

And again, one can be a citizen without be loyal. Your argument about people with dual citizenship is flawed. Otherwise, you would never have americans fighting with the taliban and other such traitors. Citizenship is not a major component of loyalty. How you are treated by fellow citizens and how you come to percieve your nation is.

Posted by: Freedom | March 30, 2006 12:19 PM

Virginia,
By birthright citizenship, you only mean birthright in the sense of physical location, yes?

Posted by: Freedom | March 30, 2006 12:22 PM

Freedom:

Yes, that's what I'm referring to.

Posted by: Virginia Dare | March 30, 2006 12:24 PM

Ok. Just making sure because there are other countries with 'birthright citizenship,' I believe, as I have UK citizenship simply by having two parents that were only UK citizens when I was born.

Posted by: Freedom | March 30, 2006 12:26 PM

PSciDoc writes:

"If you look at the immigrant problems in Europe now, a large part of the issue involves the notion of citizenship. If you are born in Germany to parents who are not German, you are not a citizen, but can apply for citizenship when you turn 18."

This is an important point. In Western Europe, it was understood that the immigrants from the Muslim world were 'guest workers'. No effort was made to assimilate them, because they were supposed to return home.

Many did not leave, because it is nicer in Europe. Their children (and grandchildren) have grown up in Europe, but are also "guest workers" under the law.

We need to think about this if the United States is considering a 'guest worker' program. It has caused a lot of tension in Europe. Do we want that here?

Posted by: Virginia Dare | March 30, 2006 01:22 PM

The law should be changed to where you must make a choice. Because one can't be loyal to two masters.

Brass tacks time THIS country may call on you to war with the UK. And we can't have "I'm not fighting my other homeland" excuses.

If my country called me to fight my parents and great-grandparent's homeland, I wouldn't hesitate, as I hold no loyality to any other country but the USA. I wouldn't even consider a dual-citizenship even if offered.
SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | March 30, 2006 01:23 PM

I don't really understand dual citizenship. Doesn't the citizenship oath of the United States include a clause about forsaking all other allegiances? If so, how can that be reconciled with dual citizenship?

I really don't get it. Anyone care to enlighten me?

Posted by: Virginia Dare | March 30, 2006 01:27 PM

Virginia,
Theoretically this is true in the cases of a person becoming naturalized. However, just because you state the US oath does not mean your other country decides you are no longer a citizen. America sees you as one citizen, other countries do not necessarily. In the case of people born dual citizens, they never take an oath so they have never even made the gesture of forsaking their other citizenship.

SandyK mistakenly thinks ending dual citizenship will end the conflicts of loyalty. It won't. Disregarding the fact that America already only acknowledges one citizenship, it would be forcing other countries to aknowledge it. Loyalty is not determined by citizenship. there are plenty of US single-citizens who feel more allegianece to Mexico, Palestine, Israel, Ireland, Saudi Arabia, etc. Loyalty is something that is felt by an individual based on their emotions and thoughts and until perfect lie detectors come about with enforcement of loyalty oaths (*shudder*) there will be no way to police it. Dual citizenship is simply being used as a scapegoat.

Posted by: Freedom | March 30, 2006 02:01 PM

I know that diplomats from other countries have "diplomatic immunity" which means they are not subject to the laws of the US. Is anyone else legally exempt from obeying US laws? As I understand it, the child must be subject tothe jurisdiction of the US; it says nothing about his parents.

Posted by: Lobo | March 30, 2006 02:16 PM

"However, just because you state the US oath does not mean your other country decides you are no longer a citizen. America sees you as one citizen, other countries do not necessarily."

Hmmm. But doesn't that mean that the implementation of the oath to forsake all other allegiances falls on the naturalized US citizen? In other words, shouldn't he/she give up the other country's passport and refuse to take advantage of any citizenship rights that country tries to offer, in order to faithfully abide by the oath he/she took to the United States?

Posted by: Virginia Dare | March 30, 2006 02:36 PM

Theoretically, though I unfortunately don't know enough information to say whether or not it would be possible to get the passport again later. Again, the real issue here seems to be loyalty and not dual citizenship. Conflicts of loyalty will exist regardless of whether one has dual citizenship or not.

The requirement of giving up passports would also do nothing of stopping dual citizens from birth. Like any other natural born citizen, they don't swear any oath. Likewise, other countries may still give citizenship to that individual, regardless of America saying "you're ours."

Posted by: Freedom | March 30, 2006 03:23 PM

Virginia,
Sorry, I missed the part about the implementation falling on the citizen. As said, I feel thats the heart of the issue. The issue about loyalty resides in the individual. Getting rid of a dual citizenship does nothing if the person feels loyalty to another nation regardless.

Posted by: Freedom | March 30, 2006 03:25 PM

Lobo, "subject to the jursidiction of" and "present in" are not the same thing.
If I go on vacation to Japan, I'm present there and have to follow Japanese laws, but I'm not "subject to the jurisdiction" of Japan because I'm not a legal resident or citizen.

Anchor babies are Mexican citizens, not American citizens.

Posted by: DC Dude | March 30, 2006 05:11 PM

I wholeheartedly agree with this proposal, and extend it only to those whose ancestors were original residents (i.e. physically present) of the territory comprising the United States at its founding (including of course African slaves). Any and all of you who immigrated and did not contribute to the founding of this great land should not enjoy the fruit of the poison tree. Out, out! back to Germany, Sweden, Ireland, Russia, Italy, Vietnam, Korea, Iran with you! Citizen originalism should be the law of the law - you want to question it, let's take it to Court: let my buddies Scalia, Thomas, Roberts, and Alito interpret the Constitution.

I would get to stay since my family has been living in what is now New Mexico since the 1600's - oh how convenient for me.

Posted by: El Naco | March 30, 2006 05:38 PM

Just a side point:

Abandoning the principle of jus soli, citizenship by birth means that we have to adopt some other principle guide our citizenship and naturalization law. The usual alternative is the idea of jus sanguinis, that citizenship is the right of those who belong to the nation. This is the principle that guides German notions of citizenship, leading to the paradoxical situation where a Turk born in Germany can never attain citizenship while a Russian of German descent who wants to immigrate to Germany may. IMHO, abandoning the principle of jus soli sets us on the slippery slope of defining a national identity, identifying who is "American" and who is not, and who deserves to belong to this nation and who does not. It is no accident that German attitudes toward foreigners are so poor when they are sanctioned by their laws. Compare this with U.S. tradition, national identity, etc. We have historically been a welcoming country. We don't have a national religion. We don't have a national language. We don't require proof that a person's parents were born in the U.S. to bestow citizenship on children.

Now if you want the country to start heading down that other path, be my guest, but caveat emptor (OK, now I think I've exhausted my latin vocabulary)!

Posted by: El Naco | March 30, 2006 05:52 PM

Uh, Naco, care to take on the obvious counterargument to your post, that those who immigrated before did it within the laws of the United States?

Come on, Naquito. This ain't amateur hour.

Posted by: DC Dude | March 30, 2006 05:52 PM

El Naco,
That is the most asinine proposal ever. If you actually look at law, as you propose, then your idea is baseless. It is one thing to say no one can be a citizen. It is another to say that you must go through the legal process. Stop trying to use offbase comparisons to try to justify your want for illegal immigrants to be allowed to break the law.

And for the record, please explain how you would not be kicked out. By your own definition, even though your family was in New Mexico since the 1600s, it wouldn't have fallen under US jurisdiction at that time and would have had no part in the founding of the nation. If I recall, at that point the area was either not settled or was under Spanish rule.

Posted by: Freedom | March 30, 2006 05:55 PM

I'm not talking to you DC Dude you are the fruit of the poison tree and your citizenship by birth is a black stain on your identity. I don't care how long you've lived here or how many Indians you killed to settle your little slice of the American dream - you don't belong here. Please pack up and go away.

Posted by: El Naco | March 30, 2006 05:56 PM

Oh don't worry, I'll just write the law that suits me best. As long as it keeps you clowns out, it's all good.

Posted by: El Naco | March 30, 2006 05:57 PM

Naco, please. Your arguments are so weak they're barely worth my time to rebut, and my time ain't worth much.

"We have historically been a welcoming country."

Right...

"We don't have a national religion."

Right...

"We don't have a national language."

Not right at all...

"We don't require proof that a person's parents were born in the U.S. to bestow citizenship on children."

Stop right there, amigo. It just wouldn't be Naco if there weren't an obvious strawman, would it? No one's arguing that your parents have to have been born in the U.S. for you to be born a U.S. citizen. The argument is that your parents have to be here legally. Sneaking across the border shouldn't count. Ireland and New Zealand just made it not count, and we should follow.

Again, the weakness of the pro-illegal immigration side is evident in the weakness of their arguments.

Posted by: DC Dude | March 30, 2006 05:58 PM

Naquito,

Just to be clear: you don't consider United States laws to be valid?

Posted by: DC Dude | March 30, 2006 06:01 PM

I have crafted my exception for the originalist citizenship argument, all those physically present in the territory PRESENTLY comprising the United States shall be deemed original citizens. We'll clear up all kinds of traffic jams with this law. Won't be no one taking the jobs away - hell, I could become a Senator, or President. I'll get paid whatever I want, because there won't be any competition. Just me, the indians, and the WASPs.

*Naco sings*

"this land is my land, this land's not your land, and because it's my land, you'll be in Riker's Island, if you try and invade, you will be getting sprayed, with buckshot from yours truly"

Posted by: El Naco | March 30, 2006 06:08 PM

"We don't require proof that a person's parents were born in the U.S. to bestow citizenship on children."

Stop right there, amigo. It just wouldn't be Naco if there weren't an obvious strawman, would it? No one's arguing that your parents have to have been born in the U.S. for you to be born a U.S. citizen."

I know that DC Doofus. That is why I pointed it out to you. Because that is what makes our approach DIFFERENT from OTHER COUNTRIES who DO HAVE SUCH A REQUIREMENT. Sometimes it is hard to have to go back and point out the reasons for my examples - because you don't know how to FOLLOW AN ARGUMENT.

Posted by: El Naco | March 30, 2006 06:10 PM

El Naco, youre not following the argument. You're spinning it every chance you get. Don't be mad when someone does it better. You left out the important part where DC Dude states "The argument is that your parents have to be here legally." Perhaps you aren't following the argument?

And you state:
"I'm not talking to you DC Dude you are the fruit of the poison tree and your citizenship by birth is a black stain on your identity. I don't care how long you've lived here or how many Indians you killed to settle your little slice of the American dream - you don't belong here. Please pack up and go away."


Wow. Just... Wow. You have apparently lost all footing in this argument I am assuming?


And in regards to making anyone currently in the US a citizen, are you insane? First off, that won't work. Why? Because the second the illegal immigrants are citizens, there is little incentive for companies to hire them. They no longer can pay them under the table and avoid things like taxes, insurance, and ignoring minimum wage. Wages will have to be competitive to not break employment law. And to claim they won't be taking American jobs is ridiculous. They already have. Should we reward them with citizenship now? The answer is no.

Posted by: Freedom | March 30, 2006 06:19 PM

a poltroon.

.

Posted by: It's interesting that the lobbyist for Mexico is also | March 30, 2006 08:24 PM

hey heffe'

what you got, a slice of the illegals action?

how much they payin you?


you don't got to believe to represent eh!?


just got to know the laws and spin it, right nacho?


kiss me, I'll take you down...

.


.

Posted by: It's always nice to prod the bellicose... | March 30, 2006 08:27 PM

let's get it on.

Posted by: c'mon punk.. | March 30, 2006 08:31 PM

it's about taking advantage of the peasants...

right heffe'

I guess if you can't win, at least you can lobby....senator.

.

Posted by: Like I said...it's not about Democrats or Republicans | March 30, 2006 08:55 PM

you don't want none


of this

you keep talking mess...

I keeping talking sense.

don't be escared of the carpenter next door

he wants to be free


you show him the door

convenient of those who already got it made

to deny an opportunity to those they ask to be slaves

in one country or another

capital runs free
labor waits in line to fill out form I-493

if you are against them be against everything else

that crosses the border with the intent to create wealth

i wouldn't mind, just be consistent

if you are not i will call you on it.

Posted by: the naco ghost in your maquina.... | March 30, 2006 09:15 PM

it's gone before you can use it,


influence is what you sell.

.

Posted by: you got nothing | March 30, 2006 10:15 PM

you're for the little man,

long as you get paid.

Posted by: consistency, in being negative intending is what I see... | March 30, 2006 10:17 PM

A running theme of mine in comments these past two weeks is how weak the arguments of the pro-illegal side are. El Naco's comments on this thread, which eventually devolved into puerile name-calling and intentional obfuscation of a debate he was clearly losing, are typical.

Viva Tom Tancredo! Si se puede!

Posted by: DC Dude | March 30, 2006 10:30 PM

Freedom wrote:
===========================================
Theoretically, though I unfortunately don't know enough information to say whether or not it would be possible to get the passport again later. Again, the real issue here seems to be loyalty and not dual citizenship. Conflicts of loyalty will exist regardless of whether one has dual citizenship or not.
===========================================

Actually not. I'm not a dual citizen and I have zero loyality conflicts with countries of orgin with my parents/great-grandparents.

But if I had a dual citizenship I may, and if conflict arose in the US, I could flee easily too. Dual citizenship allows a backdoor in and out, without the baggage. Worse it allows agents to come in this country and recruit other dual citizens to fight wars in their dual citizen countries (the pro-Israel dual citizens in this country do that, especially stoking up recruitment to "kill off the Palestinians").

After watching that in action one too many times (especially the Iragun45 types), I'm totally turned off of dual citizenship. They make me sick, coming here recruiting for their causes, then condemning our policies if it not "pro" enough for their likes.

Dual citizenship just needs to go the way of the dodo. Can't be loyal to two masters, especially if they can leave at anytime when it's brass tacks time (you can't count on them to man the barricades as they got a ticket out).

SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | March 31, 2006 12:57 AM

El Naco wrote:
===========================================
I would get to stay since my family has been living in what is now New Mexico since the 1600's - oh how convenient for me.
===========================================

I say since there's a good chance my ancestors on my mom's side came here some 1000+ years earlier than you (yep, there's biological/anthropological evidence of that as well), that YOU leave! That includes every last Latin American as well.

So don't play that game, as you'll lose. The natives before the Spanish invasion weren't Spanish, at all. So you're in the same boat as anyone else, and this boat is overfilled with illegals taking valuable space from legal immigrants.

SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | March 31, 2006 01:12 AM

El Naco wrote (as a side point):
Abandoning the principle of jus soli, citizenship by birth means that we have to adopt some other principle guide our citizenship and naturalization law. The usual alternative is the idea of jus sanguinis, that citizenship is the right of those who belong to the nation. This is the principle that guides German notions of citizenship, leading to the paradoxical situation where a Turk born in Germany can never attain citizenship while a Russian of German descent who wants to immigrate to Germany may. IMHO, abandoning the principle of jus soli sets us on the slippery slope of defining a national identity, identifying who is "American" and who is not, and who deserves to belong to this nation and who does not.
++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

This whole discussion is getting rather messy. It seems to me we need some clarification of terms. Immigrants are non-citizens who have moved into another nation for the purpose of permanent, or at least extended, residence. Migrants are non-citizens who move into another nation and back out again on a cyclic basis. These two words apply from the viewpoint of the nation moved into. If we look at the hordes coming across our southern border we might see that it includes both immigrants and migrants and that some do so legally and some do so illegally in both groups.

Citizenship is a wholly separate subject. What it defines and represents actually is membership in a nation. Possessing it confers obligations by the holder to the nation as defined by the nation, and individual rights recognized and protected by the nation.

Naco raises a perfectly valid point here about the distinctions between location of birth and parentage of birth. But it is not necessarily an either/or proposition. There can be more than one path to confer citizenship.

When it comes to parentage, i.e. conferring citizenship on a child based on the citizenship of the parents, does one parent suffice? If you are born in a foreign country to a US citizen parent married (or not) to a foreign parent, have you a right to US citizenship? Is it provisional, i.e. requiring affirmation at the age of majority? Its quite messy isn't it? Think of all those Vietnamese half-breeds our army left behind in Viet Nam.

When it comes to location, we have the oft-referenced "anchor baby" anomaly.

In my personal view, our laws should provide the following. If you are born abroad to a US citizen parent you are entitled to chose US citizenship at the age of majority. If you are born in the US to a US citizen parent you are a US citizen. If you are born in the US to foreign immigrants (legal) you are entitled to choose US citizenship at the age of majority. Otherwise, if you are a foreign citizen legally a permanent resident of the US you are entitled to seek citizenship by the naturalization process.

As I understand your definitions, this would slightly narrow the scope of jus soli and broaden the scope of jus sanguinus in our determination of the membership roll of the nation. In either case, I don't see it as a question of who "deserves" to be an American. It's a question of where fate puts you in the web of rules we draw. Without that web everyone can be an American and the word no longer means anything.

I have drawn the distinction between immigrants and migrants to illuminate the hypocrisy of the "guest worker" program. The need for migrants is primarily in agriculture where there are annual periodic relatively high intensity short duration demands for labor. These are truly guest workers in the bracero tradition. Construction, restaurants, hotels, meatpacking, etc. are year around relatively level labor demand operations. There is nothing temporary about these jobs. To the extent we wish to fill them from south of the border, immigration is the logical path. The idea that people will come, hold them for 2 or 3 years and then go home to their families is unreal. They will come, bring their families, and stay. Then they will move on to better jobs in the best traditions of past immigrants.

In both cases what is really at issue here are economics, the business need to keep labor costs down, vs. public impact, in the form of cultural challenge and the strain on public services. Unfortunately, business has a pretty good lock hold on The Beltway. If we do not gain actual control of the border, this conflict cannot be managed. I would assert that this nation must manage that conflict, and manage it to the primary benefit of its citizens. Mexico has its own obligations to the primary benefit of its citizens. Whether that is fair or not, that is the world we live in.

If you trace your family back to the 1600's in New Mexico, then in all likelihood it is to the Spanish Conquistadores, who brought horses to our Plains Indians and Missions to California, among many other things. It would be remarkable, after 400 years, if some part of your roots didn't also trace back a further 12,000 years or so in America. Indeed our best archeology coupled with the latest in biology makes a rather persuasive case that we can all trace ourselves back to a very few black families out of Africa something like 50,000 years ago, when the world was in fact largely borderless. So much for racism.

Posted by: Cayambe | March 31, 2006 03:53 AM

If the border isn't managed, there will be a civil war along the border that may spread throughout this country.

Don't know what or when the tipping point for that will be, but that fuse is quite short.

This immigration issue has been brewing for at least 5 years. That folks seem surprised at the backlash, they haven't been following politics well (or just prefer Washington beltway politics -- which is increasingly become more distant than the rest of country. East Hollywood in a way).

SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | March 31, 2006 08:31 AM

Oh come on DC Dude, you all get to have fun with me by belittling my post name, addressing me in spanish, or like that weird guy with no name - challenging me to a fistfight. You have to admit that throughout most of this debate that I've been more than willing to supply serious arguments and information. You can't fault me for having some fun with a little satire.

My point is pretty much the same as in Cayambe's last paragraph. The world is not always the way it is right now. It is in our hands to decide what kind of world we want to live in.

Citizenship - the political right to belong to a state and participate in it politics as well as to ask for the protection of the state vis a vis other states (i.e. holding a passport from your home country when traveling to another) is one of the fundamental blocks of our international system. The way our world works today is that every person has to have citizenship of some kind - or they are deemed not to exist, just like Tom Hank's character in the Terminal. This is a very different concept than that of an im migrant or a migrant - who retain the citizenship of their sending countries while working/living abroad.

Changing our citizenship rules definitely requires us to take a step back and evaluate who we are as a nation, and what kind of society we want to be. You all have taken issue with my assertions that the US has historically been an open society, and that our immigration and citizenship policies have historically reflected that openness. Restrictions of immigration and citizenship buck that tradition and start us down a different path whose end result is unclear. We don't know whether those restrictions will actually provide greater prosperity for those who live in the US, or that restrictions will preserve a uniform culture that is threatened by the presence of 11 million more people not born in the US (out of our total population of 298,414,185, meaning illegal immigrants are approximately 3% of our total population).

What we do know is the harm that it will cause to these people directly. The harm (whether the US cares or not) to US/Mexico relations. The additional restrictions on our civil liberties (lemme see your papers!). The additional expense of creating a wall and other military installations across the southern border. And once again, I will reiterate that unquantifiable and intangible harm to our own national psyche. We will be making a decision to change our national slogan. We will be abandoning one of our national myths.

Remember that the nationalism was one of principal coals that stoked the fires of two world wars. It can be very dangerous. We should attempt to neutralize this dangerous force, much as the Europeans have. We should learn from their mistakes and how they've gone about trying to correct them. The history of the U.S. relations with its hemispheric neighbors has not always been marked by benevolence and good intentions. We can change that also. We can and should make that a foreign relations priority. Cayambe asked in another forum where i stood on this issue and that it pretty much my position. That is what I work to do in my daily life, to build bridges not walls. If we all work together we can find mutually beneficial solutions.

Control of the border is an important goal. I live 10 miles from the Mexican border, and you won't believe the things that pop up on our evening news. But don't think that there is no federal presence here to address the lawlessness. We have FBI, DEA, as well as the CPB. The mexicans have sent their army and federal police to our area three times in the three years that I've lived here to pacify the drug wars that are causing heavy casualties among the Mexican population. There are rings of smugglers who bring in sex slaves to the US from all over the world, right through my little city. You all would probably be excited if someone was caught with 100 pounds of cocaine, it won't make the news here unless it is 1,000. These are real priorities. This is what US law enforcement needs to spend its time trying to combat. If we get distracted by chasing down day laborers, these guys run free. Every government has finite resources. They allocate those resources in accordance with national priorities. Illegal immigration is a problem where our resources are better spent somewhere else.

Posted by: El Naco | March 31, 2006 09:06 AM

El Nuto wrote:
===========================================
Remember that the nationalism was one of principal coals that stoked the fires of two world wars. It can be very dangerous.
===========================================

It helped us defeat the British during the Revolutionary War. It helped us defeat the British in the War of 1812. It helped us defeat the Mexicans during the Mexican War. It helped us unite after the Civil War.

So you can drop that Hitler/Nazi idea (BTW, you also invoked Godwin's Law <-- which occurs when the desperate lost their ammo). :)

SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | March 31, 2006 09:35 AM

Poor SandyK she thinks Americans won every war because America hates to lose. The British won the War of 1812 and Canada won because we got not to be American. The US army could not handle the cold. If you won the War of 1812 we would have been a part of the US.

Posted by: | March 31, 2006 09:42 AM

Cayambe wrote:
===========================================
Indeed our best archeology coupled with the latest in biology makes a rather persuasive case that we can all trace ourselves back to a very few black families out of Africa something like 50,000 years ago, when the world was in fact largely borderless. So much for racism.
===========================================
Have to go much further back in time than that, since Homo sapiens existed way before then. And on a evolutionary plane, 50,000 years isn't enough time to evolve a different "race". That takes many more thousands of years -- if in fact we all evolved from the same family tree. Seems every decade there's evidence mankind evolved from China, back to Africa, and back to China again. Could well be evolution was sparked by more than emigration and isolation, as well.

BTW, this issue doesn't involve racism. It involves illegal immigration. Can't use that club indiscrimately to try to win a debate, like those who invoke Godwin's Law.

SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | March 31, 2006 09:44 AM

let's see, there are 10+m illegals that want citizenship and there is a war going on with insufficient manpower to control the havoc.
Solution - Force all illegals to serve in our Armed Forces for 4yrs where they will learn English, pay taxes and contribute to the welfare of the country. Once they have demonstrated allegiance to the USA with military service, grant them citizenship. The Romans were quite successful using that process for assimilating foreigners, we can do same.

Of course, facing military service may cause some to prefer staying south of the border but we could get quite an army from the remainder.

Posted by: camus | March 31, 2006 10:05 AM

No, as that's how Rome fell. In the years of it's fall, the Roman army was made up of mostly foreigners. When the Visgoths rained down on Rome, their loyalty wasn't so much to protect Rome, but to save their hide and RUN.

Nope, our country needs it's armed forces manned by natives, so not to repeat history.

SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | March 31, 2006 10:11 AM

Ignorant Canuck wrote:
===========================================
Poor SandyK she thinks Americans won every war because America hates to lose. The British won the War of 1812 and Canada won because we got not to be American. The US army could not handle the cold. If you won the War of 1812 we would have been a part of the US.
===========================================

We were more interested in western expansion, not live in igloos and eating reindeer. Maybe that's why Canadians ape Americans to this day (still have a serious identity crisis, eh?).

And no we didn't lose the War of 1812. The US has never lost a war on our soil. You canucks will learn that if you push your commie ideals south. :)

Love the smell of Canadian bacon fried in the morning. :D

SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | March 31, 2006 10:17 AM

No SandyK, there was no racism. one clan just killed the other one off, but kept the females. These invaders are already killing our fellow Americans.

Posted by: Vic Bailey | March 31, 2006 10:17 AM

SandyK
Well if they run, it will be in a southern direction.
Look the pro-illegals including Bush claim that they do jobs Americans won't do and one of those is to serve in the military.

Were we to use illegals, our own citizen soldiers in the Reserbes and Guards could return to the jobs and families and the illegals could be dying and be maimed instead of Americans. That to me is a lot more important then having them cut grass.

During the days of the Draft, green card carriers were always first to be drafted so why not do same now.

Posted by: camus | March 31, 2006 10:22 AM

El Naco-

"What we do know is the harm that it will cause to these people directly. The harm (whether the US cares or not) to US/Mexico relations."

Both irrelevant. We do not factor in the harm prison will cause a murderer because the harm is the purpose. It is meant as a deterrant. Further we do not consider the harm done to a country that tacitly violates our sovereignty through inaction. Mexico has consistently maintained a complicit attitude towards illegal immigration.

"The additional restrictions on our civil liberties (lemme see your papers!)."

Many Americans are asked for their IDs everyday just to consume beverages and we don't consider this an undue hassle of their civil liberties.

"The additional expense of creating a wall and other military installations across the southern border."

Offset by the money saved in social services to illegal immigrants.

"And once again, I will reiterate that unquantifiable and intangible harm to our own national psyche. We will be making a decision to change our national slogan. We will be abandoning one of our national myths."

The fact is we have more immigrants (legal and illegal) now than we ever did in the old days of open borders. It's easy to be a country of open borders when you have 75 million people, but that changes. An infinite amount of individuals cannot fit in a finite amount of space. Our border policies reflect a growing understanding that the United States cannot remain unique among the western world in its unusually high annual population increase. We consume more than the third world per person.

We have a sovereign right to deny entrance into this country for any reason. Our quality of life is not maintainable if we continue to import poverty from Mexico in the form of illegal immigrants.

This is not to say that we should shut our door completely, but we must have control over what kinds of people we invite into the country. An open border prevents us from doing so.

"We should attempt to neutralize this dangerous force, much as the Europeans have. We should learn from their mistakes and how they've gone about trying to correct them."

The Europeans have far more strict immigration laws. I agree, there is much to learn from them in this regard.

"That is what I work to do in my daily life, to build bridges not walls."

If you mean this literally then your wages have likely been driven down from an invasion of illegal immigrants in the construction industry.

"This is what US law enforcement needs to spend its time trying to combat. If we get distracted by chasing down day laborers, these guys run free. Every government has finite resources. They allocate those resources in accordance with national priorities. Illegal immigration is a problem where our resources are better spent somewhere else."

The same lax border enforcement that lets the innocent day laborer in is the same lax border enforcement that lets the 1,000 pounds of cocaine or the drug cartel into your city.

Posted by: Will | March 31, 2006 10:35 AM

SandyK,
I maintain that your argument is flawed;
"Actually not. I'm not a dual citizen and I have zero loyality conflicts with countries of orgin with my parents/great-grandparents."

And I would argue I have zero conflicts with my second nation. I have dual citizenship, but if push came to shove, I stand with America. If asked to fight, I would decline. Not because it was my 'second master' as you put it, but because I would decline, when possible, any fight as I abhor actual physical violence. Asked to help in another way and I most certainly would.

Again, you are arguing that dual citizenship is the issue. In reality, you are using it merely as a scapegoat for another issue that eliminating dual citizenship will have no effect on. You have yet to address the issue of people becoming traitors, such as the American Taliban. If dual citizenship was truly the problem, this wouldn't happen. This just shows that loyalty is something mental. If one is going to betray the US, they will do so regardless of whether or not they actually hold loyalty to another nation. They will do it because they hate American government and people, or simply prefer another. You have yet to show me how having a second citizenship has a direct link to that that cannot also be a result of being a single citizen and prefering another country.

In previous posts, you've cited an example of someone with dual citizenship betraying the US. I've cited examples of Us citizens betraying the US. I do this to remind you that your correlation does not equal causation and you are not addressing the problem with a solution to fix disloyalty.

Posted by: Freedom | March 31, 2006 11:04 AM

Here an article from that center of liberalism, Berkeley, outlining the effects of illegal immigrants on the city of Austin and how they are exploited by the city and the corporations to the detriment of Americans:
http://are.berkeley.edu/APMP/pubs/i9news/illegalfuelaustin12599.html

Posted by: Sully | March 31, 2006 11:10 AM

Citizenship at birth is the result not just of the language of the 14th Amendment, but the interpretation and ruling of the US Supreme Court in the late 18 or early 19 hundreds around the case of a child born and raised in San Francisco who as an adult returned to China to visit his parents who had returned there. On his return to the US he was barred from entering the country by the local SF government. This was at a time of strong anti-asian sentiment in the US. Short story long the Court ruled he was a citizen.

Changing this does not require a Constitutional Amendment, simply a law defining citizenship. The law could simply slip the phrase "to current citizens of the united states" after the word born in the amendment.

To really attack this problem we must address 2 issues: stopping the flow of new illegal immigrants and identifying those already here. Both issues are important. One tactic that straddles both issues and provides some solutions is removal of incentives for illegal immigration. 1) Require proof of citizenship for all publicly funded services (Schools, Medical Treatment, Social Security, Licenses etc) This would a) make entering illegally less attractive as life here illegally would not be much improved from the home country, and b) begin the process of identifying those that are here now.

too much to post I will write more

Posted by: Tim C | March 31, 2006 03:09 PM

If I may return to the question of the 14th Amendment and citizenship by birth, the "subject to the jurisdiction thereof" clause must automatically confer citizenship by birth, unless you are willing to accept the argument that all those who are illegally in the U.S. are not subject to its laws. The ability to compel an individual to serve on a jury has nothing to do with the birth origin of citizenship requirement, for citizenship is a statutory prerequisite to serve on a jury rather than a constitutional one. By the logic of several people who have written above, non-citizens could not be compelled to register for Selective Service (i.e., the draft) because they are not subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, which is plainly not so, as many a Selective Service registrant would let you know.

Posted by: Vivek Krishnamurthy | March 31, 2006 05:50 PM

My family with 3 children immigrated into New Zealand in 1973. We could have accepted the NZ nationality, but had to loose our Dutch nationality, meaning that going back to our home country we were considered to be foreigners and were only allowed to stay there for 3 months. As there was no trouble at all to remain Dutch, we did so. We had all the rights as NZ people had, were allowed to vote, but only forbidden to get into Parliament. Well, this was not our intention, so we remained Dutch. Needed a re-entry permit when we wanted to travel overseas, had to watch that as overdue re-entry permits were not allowed to enter the country again.
My oldest daughter married a real New Zealander, 4th generation I think. But she remained Dutch. And a re-entry permit. Finally she heard that it was possible to get dual nationality and passport, but that did not work. After sittting waiting for 6 hours one day she gave up on that. It did not bother her at all. She could work wherever she wanted. Is a clinical psychologist now and now finally has a baby who is now 5 years old. That baby got immediately the Dutch and the New Zealand nationality. Needed her own NZ passport with a baby photo on it. And her parents went to the embassy and had her written in my daughter's Dutch passport.
So now children who do not speak a word of Dutch have all the rights we did not have. We never missed them, as being able to vote was to us the most important thing a person could want. But it is still strange,that 2nd generation children of a parent who entered the country, being Dutch, are now both New Zealand and Dutch citizens. Handy for later, if they want to stay here in Holland for 1 year, as we had our own children do the same, to see whether we made the right choice for them to move to New Zealand.

Those rights seem to be the same for the USA, as the topic says. But we were not considered to live there as illegal immigrants. We entered legally, but never had the NZ nationality. My daughter still is Dutch and does not want to go through all that bureaucratic stuff to get a New Zealand nationality. She feels being a New Zealander, but in the background she feels also being Dutch. Her daughter who has dual nationalities, will never have that feeling, I think.

Posted by: Marian | April 1, 2006 08:31 AM

El Naco ........ "You can't fault me for having some fun with a little satire."

I certainly don't. There is a lot of stuff written here well deserving of satire. :o)

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Changing our citizenship rules definitely requires us to take a step back and evaluate who we are as a nation, and what kind of society we want to be. You all have taken issue with my assertions that the US has historically been an open society, and that our immigration and citizenship policies have historically reflected that openness. Restrictions of immigration and citizenship buck that tradition and start us down a different path whose end result is unclear.
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

I've no quarrel with taking a step back and evaluating who we are as a nation. Indeed nothing would please me more than to see the nation revisit that very matter, as was so very well done in the late 18th century by those who invented our particular constitution. And I don't take issue with your assertions that our immigration and citizenship policies have reflected openness. I happen to think they still do. The one change I suggest to the citizenship policy with respect to location of birth is simply to exclude what one might call a right to transitory citizenship, i.e. citizenship picked up at birth while transiting through or just visiting the country. It does not seem very sensible to me to grant citizenship to transients, especially transients fresh out of the womb whose capacity to form a citizen's allegiance is years from fruition. One has to suppose that a newborn will adopt an allegiance to the nation it grows up in or that of its parents (which may or may not be the same). I don't see this as materially restricting our historical attitude so much as taking recognition of the enormously increased number of transients given modern transportation networks between nations.

Historically, effective national controls on immigration are a product of the 20th century. This is not to say we didn't restrict it on occasion in the 19th. Just ask the Chinese in California. But certainly before the middle of the 20th century we were exercising full control of immigrants, turning away several boatloads of Jews from Nazi Germany for example. So restrictions and controls on immigration are not new and we are not plowing a new path here in some different direction. What we are confronted with is that our immigration control system, on our Southern border in particular, simply does not work (and I will be the first to concede that this is entirely our fault, that we effectively designed it not to work, and it may be beyond our politics to fix it anytime soon).

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
We don't know whether those restrictions will actually provide greater prosperity for those who live in the US, or that restrictions will preserve a uniform culture that is threatened by the presence of 11 million more people not born in the US (out of our total population of 298,414,185, meaning illegal immigrants are approximately 3% of our total population).
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

I actually agree with you with respect to prosperity as measured by our GNP. I don't think anyone really knows. I do know there are dozens of Harvard and Chicago educated geniuses making 6 figure annual incomes in Washington think tanks who will give you contradictory views, all accurate to 2 decimal points. What we do know is that the current flow of people from the south willing and able to work for low wages relative to our otherwise prevailing wages in lower skilled job classifications has had the effect of lowering those prevailing wages below what is acceptable to our low skilled domestic labor supply. It threatens their rice bowl. These are citizens of this nation who seek the support of the nation in protecting their livelihood. Without employment, without livelihood, they become a social problem of the nation at large. It does seem to me that you must concede that there is a balance to be struck here, that we must recognize that taking in those from the outside can disrupt, disadvantage, displace, some of our citizens on the inside to whom we have greater obligations.

As it is, we don't have what I would call a uniform culture to begin with. What we do have is relatively stable cultures and a generally common allegiance to the nation as a whole. Personally, I am not threatened by the Latin cultures. I grew up in one. I live in a rural area where about half of our residents are from Mexico or Central America. But the flow from the south has escalated rather rapidly over the recent years and has not been uniformly distributed across this nation, so the local effects can be far far larger than a mere 3% and its perfectly understandable that people thus affected feel their culture threatened. Cultural adjustments take a lot of time, a whole lot of time, decades if not centuries. Assimilation takes time, and it is in reality a two way street, not just one way. I think we all have to recognize that the pace, the rate, the amount, of change matters and to ignore that is to flirt with social strife.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Remember that the nationalism was one of principal coals that stoked the fires of two world wars. It can be very dangerous. We should attempt to neutralize this dangerous force, much as the Europeans have. We should learn from their mistakes and how they've gone about trying to correct them.
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

El Naco, I will agree with you that nationalism is a dangerous animal, most dangerous when coupled with race or religion. But if you look at the evening news on your TV set, where you will see nationalism raised most provocatively and assertively, is in the Mexican flags waved by marching protesters in Los Angeles and Phoenix and Chicago and so on. This is pumping the bellows on the coals. To add to this are signs saying La Reconquista, La Raza. I don't know about you, but I can't help but think of the Jews and the Palestinians, still fighting and re-fighting over the same land. Greater Israel or the destruction of Israel? What is next? La Raza settlements on the North Bank of the Rio Grande? Frankly, this is not a good thing as it provokes emotional and not rational responses and arguments. As someone has already pointed out, is this immigration or invasion? To the extent that this becomes the question, the primary concern shifts to a matter of National Security, not immigration and citizenship.

Fundamentally this is why the border has to be controlled. You can't simply let one culture freeflow into another and not expect to have these problems. This is not the way human nature works. Perhaps it should, but it doesn't, anywhere in the world. No one could have been more welcoming than Houston following Katrina, but even this metropolis is groaning under the weight of absorbing the relatively minor cultural differences between them and New Orleans.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
The history of the U.S. relations with its hemispheric neighbors has not always been marked by benevolence and good intentions. We can change that also. We can and should make that a foreign relations priority.
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

You are too kind. Actually it has been marked by arbitrary and often unnecessary interference and self-interested intentions. The best thing we can do is simply quit trying to dictate their politics and economics. They have different cultures, different resources, different histories, and they have to find their own flavors of democracy, their own economic models, to suit their own needs. Hell, Chile has freely elected a female President already, and a far greater woman than Hillary or Condi to boot. They are in this way more advanced than we.

El Naco, if I read you correctly, you are driven by idealism. This is not bad per se, but it can be dangerous in a world that is not ideal. Ideals are great to provide direction to the river, but not to push it; it flows by itself.

Nice talking with you.

Posted by: Cayambe | April 1, 2006 08:33 PM

Cayambe wrote:
===========================================
No one could have been more welcoming than Houston following Katrina, but even this metropolis is groaning under the weight of absorbing the relatively minor cultural differences between them and New Orleans.
===========================================

Exactly. Every city and state has their unique identity, and when the balance is upset the locals become less than friendly or migrate themselves.

Like the Master's Golf Tournament here. Most locals with means get out of town that week, because traffic is a pain; because eating out is 2x or more expensive; noise levels from increased jet flights to and fro increases; and the visitors are totally different in viewpoints/language/idealogy.

The aversion is so great that the city refuses to host rap and rock concerts, for the trouble they bring with drugs and mayhem.

That's just one city's reaction to a slew of visitors and cultural influences. Imagine it being a slew of permanent residents who refuses to assimilate within the standards of the community?

Each community has it's right to have their standards, and their wish to maintain them.

SandyK

Posted by: SandyK | April 2, 2006 05:13 AM

People, we are at War. The borders need to be sealed period. Lets get that done and the 14th amendment will soon come a mute subject. Get it done.

As far as the exsisting illegals here. Each indivdual must be looked upon seperatly. And if length of time here and other criteria are met. That indivdual should be given a temp work pass(true idenity)until citenship can be obtained.

Many illegals have been here for 5, 10, 15 years. Many have been productive and would be a fine addition to our country. Crinimals and all that have been here less then 18 months get's a express ticket out.

The real problem I see? How will the people who barely make it now, make it when they are forced to pay taxes? This no doubt will play a critical role on who must go and who can stay.

But that leads us to this country's dark secret. Our economy only works if you cheat.

Posted by: Mike A. | April 2, 2006 03:15 PM

Just an observation, that despite the 14th Amendment, Indian tribal persons were not granted "citizenship" until 1924, despite being born or having ancestors born on this continent for several thousand years.

Posted by: shayne del cohen | April 4, 2006 12:57 PM

I think Emily completely misstates what jurisdiction means under the 14th. Here is what P.A. Madison says additionally on it:


It is equally important to understand that there is only one path for an alien to come under the jurisdiction of the United States: Through the process of naturalization that, among other things, requires a person to renounce allegiance to their country of origin. It is not recognized as a matter of law that an alien giving birth to to a child while in the United States, is by itself, a act of naturalization on the part of the mother. This is because naturalization is a process of law, and not a individual act outside the process of law.

Under national law, the idea behind birthright is the same as it was before and after the adoption of the 14th amendment: Only a citizen can make a citizen through the process of childbirth.

Posted by: Barry W | April 5, 2006 12:45 AM

i been in us sence i was 7 and my dream and my family dream is to be a citzenchip of united states i work in the country is just i got used to it i go with laws i never committed a crime in my life...

Posted by: joseph | April 12, 2006 12:33 AM

the british won the war of 1812 you invaded us and we sent you bank to the usa where you belong! why do you thing you won you didn't win anything, no land you just lots alot of people for know reson

Posted by: chris | July 9, 2006 05:54 PM

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