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Best Reason Against Changing The 14th Amendment  
User currently offlineD L X From United States of America, joined May 1999, 11384 posts, RR: 52
Posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 2476 times:

The best reason against changing the 14th Amendment to deny citizenship to someone whose parents entered the country illegally is,

How are you going to determine years later whether someone is a citizen or not?

Situation ONE:

Picture this major problem: Lorenzo is born in Texas. He grows up in America. He thinks he's American. He's got a birth certificate, a social security number, eats apple pie, sings country music, and even roots for the Redskins, because screw Dallas. When he turns 18, he applies to college, and gets in. He submits a financial aid request, because with his parents both now deceased, he has the brains for college, but not the money. The government audits his request, and challenges his US Citizenship. They allege that he was born from illegal aliens, and therefore does not have US Citizenship. And without citizenship, not only does he not get financial aid, but he might get deported - deported to a country he has never even known.

How is Lorenzo going to prove his parents were legally in the country when he was born? Any evidence of such, if it ever existed, is LOOOONG gone.

Situation TWO:

Same basic facts: Lorenzo is born in Texas, grows up in America, has a birth certificate and a social security number. his parents die before he is accepted into college. He applies for financial aid, and the government audits his request. They strongly suspect that he is not a citizen because they think his parents were not legally present when he was born. If they give him aid when he's not a citizen, aid that could have gone to someone else might not get there. How are they going to prove that Lorenzo's parents were in the country illegally? Any evidence of such, if it ever existed, is LOOOONG gone.

Situation THREE:

Same facts, but Lorenzo casts a vote in an election, along with thousands of other Latinos. Turns out, it's a close race, and the candidate who stands to lose challenges the voter rolls, demanding proof that every person with a Latin-sounding name that voted be investigated for citizenship. Because, if they're not a citizen, they should not have been allowed to vote. How would a candidate prove Lorenzo and others are not citizens? How would Lorenzo and others prove that they are?


Altering the 14th Amendment to end birthright citizenship opens the door to challenging someone's citizenship years later, but when there is little or no evidence to argue either way. The rule should stay the same for one reason: it's EASY! Citizenship is a big deal! It should be extremely easy and unmistakable that someone is a citizen. Hospital records and birth certificates are incredibly easy ways to prove citizenship, and thus it should remain so. Otherwise, you'll have an unenforceable rule.


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43 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineDocLightning From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 19806 posts, RR: 59
Reply 1, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 2455 times:

Quoting D L X (Thread starter):

Picture this major problem: Lorenzo is born in Texas. He grows up in America. He thinks he's American. He's got a birth certificate, a social security number, eats apple pie, sings country music, and even roots for the Redskins, because screw Dallas. When he turns 18, he applies to college, and gets in. He submits a financial aid request, because with his parents both now deceased, he has the brains for college, but not the money. The government audits his request, and challenges his US Citizenship. They allege that he was born from illegal aliens, and therefore does not have US Citizenship. And without citizenship, not only does he not get financial aid, but he might get deported - deported to a country he has never even known.

How is Lorenzo going to prove his parents were legally in the country when he was born? Any evidence of such, if it ever existed, is LOOOONG gone.

The law needs to be set up to give the benefit of the doubt to the individual. Once a birth certificate has been given and a SSN granted, it cannot be rescinded. The determination of citizenship needs to be done at birth. Once you are a citizen, it cannot be withdrawn unless it can be shown that YOU provided fraudulent information. Not your parents.

This is exactly what is done in other countries, like Mexico. BEFORE the birth certificate is granted, the parents need to demonstrate their citizenship. Once the baby is given the birth certificate and SSN, then it's over.

In other words, the way that the country needs to work is as follows: Lorenzo's parents appear in a hospital. They are illegal immigrants. She is in labor. Lorenzo is born. He is given a birth certificate but no SSN. The Mexican consulate is contacted and informed that a Mexican national has given birth in a U.S. hospital and that they should process the newborn's paperwork. The family is then deported to Mexico.

Suppose that the parents, being saavy, refuse to admit that they are Mexican citizens and refuse to state their names or nationality. In that case, then Lorenzo is an American citizen. He is removed from his parents and placed in foster care, and they are either incarcerated or deported, depending on whether they can be identified.

I guarantee you that given the choice between deportation and losing the baby entirely, very few people will enter the country illegally to have kids. But the determination of citizenship needs to be done AT BIRTH and once it's done, there needs to be a "no double jeopardy" rule.

That's exactly what countries without "birthright" rules do.


User currently offlinesw733 From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 6330 posts, RR: 9
Reply 2, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 2453 times:

Quoting D L X (Thread starter):
How are you going to determine years later whether someone is a citizen or not?

Most countries in the world do NOT have jus soli, and they have no issues determining who is and who is not a citizen...the US is one of the rare countries that allows jus soli.

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 1):
Once a birth certificate has been given and a SSN granted, it cannot be rescinded.

I agree, unless the person decides they no longer want to be a citizen (which is expensive now for an American to do!!)


User currently offlinesv7887 From United States of America, joined May 2008, 1025 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 16 hours ago) and read 2402 times:

Quoting sw733 (Reply 2):
Most countries in the world do NOT have jus soli, and they have no issues determining who is and who is not a citizen...the US is one of the rare countries that allows jus soli.

A great point. My parents were British Citizens and when I was born in the US they had to register my birth at the British embassy in order to get me a British passport as well. IIRC the law soon changed (this was 1982) and it was not possible to get a British Passport if you weren't born there from then on.

Conversely at the time my parents were only H-1 visa holders when I was born in the USA. If my dad had lost his job or was denied a green card we would have had to leave the US. Luckily Textron was quite pleased with his work and got him a green card fairly quickly. Otherwise we would have had to go back to the UK.

There was an article about 8% of kids in the US being born to illegal immigrant families...That's the impetus for change.

Source:http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704216804575423641955803732.html


User currently offlineD L X From United States of America, joined May 1999, 11384 posts, RR: 52
Reply 4, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 16 hours ago) and read 2393 times:

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 1):
The determination of citizenship needs to be done at birth.

Agreed.

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 1):
BEFORE the birth certificate is granted, the parents need to demonstrate their citizenship.

Two problems with this: first, how would You go about showing your Citizenship? We don't got no national ID, and most Americans don't hold passports. Indeed, the way most Americans prove they are citizens is by showing a birth certificate, but we know that doesn't work anymore if the 14A is changed. .
Second, there are plenty of non-citizens that are not present within the country illegally. A Mexican national that crosses the bridge over the Rio Grande and passes through customs into Texas is here legally just as someone is who flies in from England (unless they overstay their visa). Same with a person holding a green card, like my former boss whose kid was born here in the US. Now, I can't claim to know what papers someone is given and required to keep to show that they are legally present in the country. But it should be noted that *no one* is saying that you can't be a citizen if your parents aren't citizens. That flies in Japan, but it would cause riots here in the US.

Quoting sv7887 (Reply 3):
There was an article about 8% of kids in the US being born to illegal immigrant families...

I saw that this morning too. That's actually what got me thinking about this, because that stat sure sounds sexy, right? That stat will push public opinion. So we really need to analyze what would happen if this change actually sees fruition.

(And it also makes me wonder, who all is included in that 8% figure? Does that include people who have overstayed a visa? It's certainly not all Mexicans.



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User currently offlinesv7887 From United States of America, joined May 2008, 1025 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 16 hours ago) and read 2384 times:

Quoting D L X (Reply 4):
(And it also makes me wonder, who all is included in that 8% figure? Does that include people who have overstayed a visa? It's certainly not all Mexicans.

Trust me a LOT of Indians are in that pool too. The media picks on the Mexicans a lot but they are not the only ones. It's pretty common for someone in the Indian community to sponsor their relative for a tourist visa, overstay and somehow get them married in the US. Pretty popular for Indians who come on a student visa and can't get jobs. Others just overstay and buy up a convenience store under a legal relative's name too...I know at least 5 people in the Boston area who've done this.


User currently offlineDocLightning From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 19806 posts, RR: 59
Reply 6, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 15 hours ago) and read 2341 times:

Quoting D L X (Reply 4):

Two problems with this: first, how would You go about showing your Citizenship? We don't got no national ID, and most Americans don't hold passports. Indeed, the way most Americans prove they are citizens is by showing a birth certificate, but we know that doesn't work anymore if the 14A is changed. .

That is correct. A change in that amendment will probably require a national ID or some way to prove citizenship.

But also, any birth certificate granted before the change in the amendment would still be valid proof of citizenship.


User currently offlineBoeing1970 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 7, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 15 hours ago) and read 2329 times:

Quoting D L X (Thread starter):
Picture this major problem: Lorenzo is born in Texas. He grows up in America. He thinks he's American. He's got a birth certificate, a social security number, eats apple pie, sings country music, and even roots for the Redskins, because screw Dallas. When he turns 18, he applies to college, and gets in. He submits a financial aid request, because with his parents both now deceased, he has the brains for college, but not the money. The government audits his request, and challenges his US Citizenship. They allege that he was born from illegal aliens, and therefore does not have US Citizenship. And without citizenship, not only does he not get financial aid, but he might get deported - deported to a country he has never even known.

If Lorenzos parents were citizens, there would be a record of it. This isn't the 1820's.

Quoting D L X (Thread starter):
Same basic facts: Lorenzo is born in Texas, grows up in America, has a birth certificate and a social security number. his parents die before he is accepted into college. He applies for financial aid, and the government audits his request. They strongly suspect that he is not a citizen because they think his parents were not legally present when he was born. If they give him aid when he's not a citizen, aid that could have gone to someone else might not get there. How are they going to prove that Lorenzo's parents were in the country illegally? Any evidence of such, if it ever existed, is LOOOONG gone.

Again, if Lorenzos parents were legally present, there would be a record of it. This isn't the 1820's.

Quoting D L X (Thread starter):
Same facts, but Lorenzo casts a vote in an election, along with thousands of other Latinos. Turns out, it's a close race, and the candidate who stands to lose challenges the voter rolls, demanding proof that every person with a Latin-sounding name that voted be investigated for citizenship. Because, if they're not a citizen, they should not have been allowed to vote. How would a candidate prove Lorenzo and others are not citizens? How would Lorenzo and others prove that they are?

How do you do so today?


User currently offlineD L X From United States of America, joined May 1999, 11384 posts, RR: 52
Reply 8, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 15 hours ago) and read 2319 times:

Quoting Boeing1970 (Reply 7):
Again, if Lorenzos parents were legally present, there would be a record of it. This isn't the 1820's.

Not necessarily true, unless you can point me to such records. In fact, point me to where those records would be for a kid born 18 years ago.

Also, I want to make sure you're on the same page as me - legal presence means you went through customs, and haven't overstayed a visa. You don't have to be a citizen to be legally present and have a baby.

Quoting Boeing1970 (Reply 7):
How do you do so today?

You don't have ex post facto challenges to citizenship today. Birth certificates (and probably a photo ID) are enough to show that X. Jones is a citizen, and that you are X. Jones.



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User currently offlineDreadnought From United States of America, joined Feb 2008, 8847 posts, RR: 24
Reply 9, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 15 hours ago) and read 2313 times:

Quoting D L X (Thread starter):
The best reason against changing the 14th Amendment to deny citizenship to someone whose parents entered the country illegally is,

How are you going to determine years later whether someone is a citizen or not?

Your best reason is a very poor reason. We would not make it retroactive. It would not be fair, and in fact I seem to recall that the Constitution prohibits retroactive laws like that.

But from the day of the amendment forwards, no more.

Quoting sw733 (Reply 2):
I agree, unless the person decides they no longer want to be a citizen (which is expensive now for an American to do!!)
Quoting D L X (Reply 4):
Two problems with this: first, how would You go about showing your Citizenship? We don't got no national ID, and most Americans don't hold passports. Indeed, the way most Americans prove they are citizens is by showing a birth certificate, but we know that doesn't work anymore if the 14A is changed. .

Which is why I am 100% in support of national ID cards. Those who resist the idea are just paranoid.

[Edited 2010-08-12 13:03:01]


Veni Vidi Castratavi Illegitimos
User currently offlineD L X From United States of America, joined May 1999, 11384 posts, RR: 52
Reply 10, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 15 hours ago) and read 2297 times:

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 9):
Your best reason is a very poor reason. We would not make it retroactive. It would not be fair, and in fact I seem to recall that the Constitution prohibits retroactive laws like that.

But from the day of the amendment forwards, no more.

I'm not talking ex post facto. I'm talking about a kid born after the amendment. (Though the corner case presents its own problem, but as you and Doc note, can be easily solved in favor of the kid.)

So, add that fact: Lorenzo is born after the 14A is amended to exclude children of people illegal in the country. Does that change your analysis?



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User currently offlinewindy95 From United States of America, joined Dec 2008, 2738 posts, RR: 8
Reply 11, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 15 hours ago) and read 2296 times:

There is no reason not to change it. Except to pander for future votes.


OMG-Obama Must Go
User currently offlineDreadnought From United States of America, joined Feb 2008, 8847 posts, RR: 24
Reply 12, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 15 hours ago) and read 2292 times:

Quoting D L X (Reply 10):
So, add that fact: Lorenzo is born after the 14A is amended to exclude children of people illegal in the country. Does that change your analysis?

If he was born after the amendment and was not granted US citizenship at birth (i.e. neither of his parents were citizens), then he is Mexican/Guatemalan or whatever. Where's the problem?



Veni Vidi Castratavi Illegitimos
User currently offlineD L X From United States of America, joined May 1999, 11384 posts, RR: 52
Reply 13, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 15 hours ago) and read 2280 times:

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 12):
If he was born after the amendment and was not granted US citizenship at birth (i.e. neither of his parents were citizens), then he is Mexican/Guatemalan or whatever. Where's the problem?

You're adding facts that I did not say were part of the story. He was born in the US, and for whatever reason, be it that his parents were legally present, or that they were illegals but got away with it, he was considered a citizen at birth. The salient fact is that his citizenship was not challenged until many years later. What do you do?



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User currently offlineDreadnought From United States of America, joined Feb 2008, 8847 posts, RR: 24
Reply 14, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 14 hours ago) and read 2261 times:

Quoting D L X (Reply 13):
You're adding facts that I did not say were part of the story. He was born in the US, and for whatever reason, be it that his parents were legally present, or that they were illegals but got away with it, he was considered a citizen at birth. The salient fact is that his citizenship was not challenged until many years later. What do you do?

I see only two possibilities of how that can happen: 1) The newborn was granted citizenship papers without proof of the parents' citizenship being presented, in which case the government officer should be disciplined/fired/prosecuted, or 2) The parents presented false documentation, and they should be thrown in jail for a hell of a long time.

Look, you are raising silly objections as if this idea is somehow new and unusual. Virtually every civilized country in the world does this, and it works very well - relatively few cases of abuse, especially when you consider what is going on today. You have to show up in person at the registry office, show the required paperwork and you get your kids' papers. Otherwise you go to your nearest embassy. Easy. The granting of citizenship at birth was a post-slavery measure that has outlived its usefulness.



Veni Vidi Castratavi Illegitimos
User currently offlinefr8mech From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 5470 posts, RR: 14
Reply 15, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 14 hours ago) and read 2251 times:

Quoting D L X (Reply 13):
You're adding facts that I did not say were part of the story. He was born in the US, and for whatever reason, be it that his parents were legally present, or that they were illegals but got away with it, he was considered a citizen at birth. The salient fact is that his citizenship was not challenged until many years later. What do you do?


But, you keep adding facts.

My assumptions would be (and using assumptions when the government bureaucrats is involved is an iffy proposition, at best) would be:
-any change to the 14th amendment would not be retroactive, thus, no challenges after the fact
-at least one parent must be a US citizen. Not a legal immigrant, not a 'green card' holder, not a visiting student...a citizen.
-once the child is born, it is incumbent on the parents to prove their citizenship. After at least one parent proves US citizenship, a valid birth certificate is issued.

So, to answer your question:

Quoting D L X (Reply 13):
The salient fact is that his citizenship was not challenged until many years later. What do you do?


I will answer with your own words:

Quoting D L X (Thread starter):
Hospital records and birth certificates are incredibly easy ways to prove citizenship


If the hospital issues a valid 'US Citizen" birth certificate, Lorenzo is a citizen.

I will add, that if the parents are on a path to citizenship, i.e. legal immigrants who have made their intentions known through application, once they become citizens, any children born in the US (between the parent's immigration and their naturalization) are automatically naturalized, so long as they have not obtained the age of 18.


I will also add, that I'm on the fence about this. I haven't decided if it's a good idea or not to change the 14th Amendment.

[Edited 2010-08-12 13:48:49]


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User currently offlineDocLightning From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 19806 posts, RR: 59
Reply 16, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 14 hours ago) and read 2249 times:

Quoting D L X (Reply 8):

Also, I want to make sure you're on the same page as me - legal presence means you went through customs, and haven't overstayed a visa. You don't have to be a citizen to be legally present and have a baby.

I think that a tourist visa should not count as "legally present" for the purposes of a child having citizenship.

Quoting D L X (Reply 10):


So, add that fact: Lorenzo is born after the 14A is amended to exclude children of people illegal in the country. Does that change your analysis?

No, because in all such cases, the government should have to prove that he ISN'T a citizen and furthermore that he himself willingly provided fraudulent information to support his citizenship claim. In other words, the rules should be like those for crimes. You don't have to prove your innocence, the government has to prove your guilt.

So if the records are lacking, but he has a birth certificate and an SSN, then there is a presumption of citizenship.

Under the sorts of rules I'd propose, he never would have got the SSN if his parents weren't citizens or legally present aliens on a non-tourist visa or green card. And if it turns out someone screwed up 18 years before and wrongly issued him an SSN, then that's our fault and he's a citizen.

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 14):

Look, you are raising silly objections as if this idea is somehow new and unusual. Virtually every civilized country in the world does this, and it works very well - relatively few cases of abuse, especially when you consider what is going on today. You have to show up in person at the registry office, show the required paperwork and you get your kids' papers. Otherwise you go to your nearest embassy. Easy. The granting of citizenship at birth was a post-slavery measure that has outlived its usefulness.

Dreaddy and I are agreeing again. I'm starting to get a cold, prickly sensation inside. It doesn't feel right. Mommy!


User currently offlineD L X From United States of America, joined May 1999, 11384 posts, RR: 52
Reply 17, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 14 hours ago) and read 2232 times:

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 14):
Look, you are raising silly objections as if this idea is somehow new and unusual.

I'm sorry you find it silly, but it is in fact new and unusual to Americans. It may work in other countries, but other countries have the history and the legal infrastructure to support it. We don't. And so if we're going to have a legitimate non-emotion-driven debate about amending the 14A, we need to include in that discussion the externalities, such as a challenge to citizenship many years after the person is born.

With that, can I address your points?

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 14):
I see only two possibilities of how that can happen: 1) The newborn was granted citizenship papers without proof of the parents' citizenship being presented, in which case the government officer should be disciplined/fired/prosecuted, or 2) The parents presented false documentation, and they should be thrown in jail for a hell of a long time.

I think there are more possibilities than that, but I can for sake of argument assume there are not. If you don't know whether the kid fell into category 1 or 2 or some other category, how are you going to find out 18 years later?

I think Doc's answer is the only one that makes this work - incontestability. Once you get the card, it is irrevocable. (hope you don't lose it!)

But let's not kid ourselves that there are not American citizens that are deported because they don't have the right paperwork to prove their citizenship. (Think Puerto Ricans dropped off in Mexico.)

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 15):
But, you keep adding facts.

No, I don't believe that I did. I pointed out that the holes in the story were purposefully left as holes, as in they would be facts that would remain unknown when Lorenzo's citizenship was challenged many years after he was born. And I pointed out that I never meant applying the new amendment retroactively. (Though, there is no prohibition in the Constitution that would prevent such. In fact, the 14th Amendment originally was applied retroactively, granting citizenship to everyone who was born in the US before the 14A was ratified.)

In any event, I'm completely open to branching out the hypothetical to include new facts. Just as long as I get an answer with just my facts alone as well.  
Quoting fr8mech (Reply 15):
-any change to the 14th amendment would not be retroactive, thus, no challenges after the fact

Agreed. HT to Dreadnought for clarifying this.

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 15):
-at least one parent must be a US citizen. Not a legal immigrant, not a 'green card' holder, not a visiting student...a citizen.
-once the child is born, it is incumbent on the parents to prove their citizenship. After at least one parent proves US citizenship, a valid birth certificate is issued.

Well, those are new facts. Is that how the replacement amendment would look in your mind?

(Also, does this requirement that one US parent prove citizenship now require a paternity test?)

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 15):
If the hospital issues a valid 'US Citizen" birth certificate, Lorenzo is a citizen.

Not sure how I feel about the hospital determining the legal status of the parents.

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 16):
I think that a tourist visa should not count as "legally present" for the purposes of a child having citizenship.

Okay, let's take that branch. How about a work visa, or a Green Card? Why and why not?

(And consider that if the kid is not a citizen, he may be a citizen of **nowhere** because he wasn't born in the other country.)

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 16):
No, because in all such cases, the government should have to prove that he ISN'T a citizen and furthermore that he himself willingly provided fraudulent information to support his citizenship claim. In other words, the rules should be like those for crimes. You don't have to prove your innocence, the government has to prove your guilt.

So if the records are lacking, but he has a birth certificate and an SSN, then there is a presumption of citizenship.

Acknowledged. Interesting.



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User currently offlinefr8mech From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 5470 posts, RR: 14
Reply 18, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 13 hours ago) and read 2223 times:

Quoting D L X (Reply 17):
Well, those are new facts. Is that how the replacement amendment would look in your mind?

I'm no legal scholar or author, but I see no reason why those changes can't be incorporated.

Quoting D L X (Reply 17):
(Also, does this requirement that one US parent prove citizenship now require a paternity test?)

If the child's paternity is in question, then yes.

Quoting D L X (Reply 17):
(And consider that if the kid is not a citizen, he may be a citizen of **nowhere** because he wasn't born in the other country.)

Good question. I know that if you're born to Greek parents, regardless of location, you are Greek. What's the law like in other nations?

Quoting D L X (Reply 17):
Not sure how I feel about the hospital determining the legal status of the parents.

Hospitals deal with governmental processes and procedures all the time. This would just be another form. This wouldn't have to be an 'instant' thing. You fill out a form, you make your claims of citizenship and in 30 - 60 days, you get a spanking new US government approved 'US Citizen' birth certificate to replace the provisional one issued by the hospital. (Hey, I like this game of making up rules, regulations and laws).

Look, it's a complex question and needs a lot more than off-the-cuff debate. If the US were to go forward with this, it would have to happen under the amendment process. Lots of visibility and lots of scrutiny.

Bottom-line, we are one of the few nations that recognize a birthright to citizenship. Maybe that's a good thing, maybe night. I'm on the fence and haven't given it much thought beyond this discussion.

Let's see what the legal eagles come up with, if it gets that far.



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User currently offlineD L X From United States of America, joined May 1999, 11384 posts, RR: 52
Reply 19, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 13 hours ago) and read 2219 times:

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 18):
I'm no legal scholar or author, but I see no reason why those changes can't be incorporated.

Sorry, I wasn't trying to be pointed there. Just asking the question.

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 18):
If the child's paternity is in question, then yes.

Then the new scam will be "pay me $500, and I'll tell the hospital that I'm tha daddy."

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 18):
Good question. I know that if you're born to Greek parents, regardless of location, you are Greek. What's the law like in other nations?

That's the way some countries do it, not just Greece. I think Ireland says anyone who is provably an 8th Irish can gain citizenship. But if my understanding is correct, Turkey requires you to be born in Turkey, which is why there are a bunch of ethnic Turks in Germany that are citizens of nowhere.

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 18):
Hey, I like this game of making up rules, regulations and laws

It is fun!!   And a lot better than yelling at each other about whether to follow this Red Guy's law or this Blue Guy's law.

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 18):
Look, it's a complex question and needs a lot more than off-the-cuff debate.

True, but still interesting (which equals fun to me) to discuss.

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 18):
If the US were to go forward with this, it would have to happen under the amendment process. Lots of visibility and lots of scrutiny.

True. I think that in and of itself is why this will never happen. There's a reason we haven't seen an amendment in 30+ years - it's just too freakin' hard to make one in the modern era, especially with the direct election of Senators.



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User currently offlinefr8mech From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 5470 posts, RR: 14
Reply 20, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 12 hours ago) and read 2200 times:

Quoting D L X (Reply 19):
True. I think that in and of itself is why this will never happen. There's a reason we haven't seen an amendment in 30+ years - it's just too freakin' hard to make one in the modern era, especially with the direct election of Senators.

Oh so true. There was a reason the Framers of The Constitution wanted the state legislatures to choose the Senators. Now, The Senate is just a longer seated House.

Quoting D L X (Reply 19):
Then the new scam will be "pay me $500, and I'll tell the hospital that I'm tha daddy."

Of course that's the scam. How about we run a paternity test if the citizenship of the parents are in question? Such as if the parents refuse, or unable to, provide proof of citizenship.



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User currently offlineLTU932 From Germany, joined Jan 2006, 13864 posts, RR: 50
Reply 21, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 2165 times:

Quoting fr8mech (Reply 18):
Good question. I know that if you're born to Greek parents, regardless of location, you are Greek. What's the law like in other nations?

Here's my perspective: My father is a naturlised German (he was born as an Italian), my mother is Costa Rican, so there are two sides of the story. When I was born, I acquired Costa Rican citizenship by birth, as I was born to a Costa Rican citizen (my mother). My father was already German, having gotten the German passport in 1980. But we did not know until around 1996 or so that I was also German by birth, so by then I got the papers that certified me as a German citizen.

Now, when I became 18, I'd usually have to choose which citizenship to keep, as German citizenship law doesn't allow dual citizenship unless you can't renounce the other citizenship you acquired by birth. Costa Rica changed its citizenship laws in the 90's because of the astronaut Franklin Chang, who had to acquire US citizenship in order to be accepted as an astronaut into NASA. Back then, Costa Rica did not allow any dual citizenship but because of the astronaut, the constitution was changed, making Costa Rican citizenship irrenounceable and allowing dual citizenship to natural born Costa Rican citizens, including allowing people who lost their citizenship to reacquire it. Some people call this the Franklin Chang Act.

Therefore, I got to keep both citizenships, because by the time I turned 18, Costa Rican citizenship was irrenounceable, therefore I became an exception in the eye of German citizenship law and was able to keep my German passport.


User currently offlineDocLightning From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 19806 posts, RR: 59
Reply 22, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 2162 times:

Quoting D L X (Reply 17):

Okay, let's take that branch. How about a work visa, or a Green Card? Why and why not?

Because a work visa or green card implies that you are immigrating. Immigration is good. We want to encourage immigration. We like immigrants. Most of us ARE immigrants. We just don't want illegal immigrants who are going to leach off the system and come here and have eight kids that they can't pay for. We want hard-working immigrants who are going to contribute to our culture and economy.

Even if they don't wind up staying, I'd rather give those kids the benefit of the doubt. At age 18 they will have to choose which passport they keep. So if they move back to their home countries, they will probably choose to surrender their US citizenship.

Coming here on vacation does not imply an intent to immigrate.


User currently onlineltbewr From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 13120 posts, RR: 12
Reply 23, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 2148 times:

Quoting D L X (Reply 19):
Quoting fr8mech (Reply 18):
Good question. I know that if you're born to Greek parents, regardless of location, you are Greek. What's the law like in other nations?

That's the way some countries do it, not just Greece. I think Ireland says anyone who is provably an 8th Irish can gain citizenship. But if my understanding is correct, Turkey requires you to be born in Turkey, which is why there are a bunch of ethnic Turks in Germany that are citizens of nowhere.

This is one of the potential problems that has to be recognized before we make this huge change as to birthright citizenship in the USA. Making many 1000's of people statesless is probably against a number of human right treaties the USA is part of, cause many dragged out court cases and probably a lot of corruption.

What may have to happen is mandate a national standard of Birth Certificates, to have one form where one of the birth parents are citizens or legal residents thus the child is a citizen and a second from noting that both parents are not legal residents or citizens of the USA and that the child is not to be considered a citizen. Of course that leads to the hospitals having to enforce Federal immigration laws with all it's problems, this would especially be a conflict for hospitals operated by Catholic or other faith groups.


User currently offlinerfields5421 From United States of America, joined Jul 2007, 7607 posts, RR: 32
Reply 24, posted (4 years 1 month 3 weeks 8 hours ago) and read 2095 times:

Quoting D L X (Reply 17):
Quoting fr8mech (Reply 15):
If the hospital issues a valid 'US Citizen" birth certificate, Lorenzo is a citizen.

Not sure how I feel about the hospital determining the legal status of the parents.

Hospital issued birth certificates are not valid in the US to establish identity or citizenship.

Even older US citizens have problems if their only birth certificate is a hospital issued one today. Problems with establishing Social Security eligibility, obtaining a passport, even in some cases obtaining a renewed driver's license, etc. Quite often affidavits are required from US citizens who have known them for decades. My father has had to do this several times in the past 10-15 years.

Today hospitals collect information and it is submitted to the state which issues the birth certificate. Establishing proof of US citizenship for issuance of a 'US citizen' birth certificate would be just an extra form. Heck, I had to do the same basic thing when my now middle age children were born on a foreign country decades ago.

You are correct though - there would be issues and problems for some folks.

How the 14th Amerndment would be changed isn't the problem. The issue would be how the DOJ writes the implementing regulations. They could be written very tightly, or very loosely and could be modified as administrations change.

I do agree with one of the points mentioned above.

Any change to the 14th amendment is going to increase the requirements for a more verifiable ID - it will greatly increase the probability of a US National Identity Card becoming a reality.


25 fr8mech : Not yet, but since we're making new laws....
26 redflyer : The above two situations could happen even if Lorenzo was brought here at the age of 6 months by his illegal immigrant parents. He could grow up thin
27 Post contains images Pyrex : How exactly is a birth certificate a proof of citizenship? As far as I can tell, they do not have pictures, fingerprints, ADN records or any other th
28 DocLightning : There would be ample opportunity to figure this out before he turns 18. Like when his parents take him to go get his shots and they have no insurance
29 fr8mech : Typically, if an organization is asking for your birth certificate they will also ask for corraborrating identification, i.e. somthing with your pict
30 ATCtower : Flame me if you want, but... The majority of Americans do not have an issue with someone "illegal" with good intentions, and willing to pay taxes to t
31 dxing : I don't know why this is so difficult. At birth either the parents can produce documentation that they are in fact citizens or they can't. If they can
32 Post contains links windy95 : But according to the author of the 14th Amendment there is no loophole. The loope hole has been created by activist judges. http://en.wikipedia.org/w
33 L410Turbolet : Wouldn't IDs and ditching the ius soli solve a lot of your headaches with illegal immigration? Opposition against "Big Brother" ID cards sure had som
34 windy95 : Exactly. Combo drivers/minipassport type id. As if the Feds do not know everything about me already..
35 D L X : It is not judicial activism to interpret the clause by the words they use. He may have thought that, but those weren't the words that ended up in the
36 PanHAM : No, they are Turkish citizens, Turkey really wants them and i refrain from saying why. but they coiuld apply for german citizenshiup as well. No prob
37 windy95 : Yes it is.... When the author is on record as saying.... Funny how seperation of church and state gets pulled from one old letter of Jeffersons and i
38 Flighty : Well, how do other countries do it? If baby is born to foreign guests, my guess is their embassy either arranges a visa for that baby when it is born
39 rfields5421 : Okay - he defines foreigners, aliens as the family of ambassadors or foreign ministers accredited to the Government of the United States and defines
40 LTU932 : I don't think it would have been that simple. My father had to renounce the Italian citizenship when he got the German passport for the first time. A
41 PanHAM : Yes, Germany does not allow dual citizenship and poissibly Italy is the same. What I meant actually was, in the EU it is not that important which EU
42 Post contains images Longhornmaniac : I stopped reading when you said this. Everything else I agree with, though. Cheers, Cameron
43 Aesma : I have a cousin that is both French and Italian (and voted for Berlusconi AND Sarkozy, argh !).
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