Protect and Defend

Welcome to my blog, Protect and Defend. You don’t have to understand me. You only have to agree with me. I can live with losing the good fight, but I can not live with not fighting that good fight at all. - Publius

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

14th Amendment

According to the Associated Press (May 23, 2006).

About 2 million families face the risk of being split up because the children are U.S.-born citizens but the parents are illegal immigrants. At least one lawmaker has proposed ending citizenship by birthright, restricting automatic citizenship at birth to children of U.S. citizens and legal residents… About 3.1 million children are U.S. citizens by birth, even though one or both of their parents are here illegally, according to estimates by the Pew Hispanic Center… “It’s not as large a magnet as jobs, but it will be easier to solve the problem of illegal immigration if we avoid the mixed-family situation,” said Rep. Nathan Deal, R-Ga., who tried unsuccessfully to revoke the citizenship-by-birth right in the immigration bill passed by the House in December.

So it seems that something can be done with the 14th Amendment without having to start a new Amendment process. All we need is for Congress to grow a backbone and do something about it.

4 Comments:

Blogger Truth-Pain said...

I've gotten a few comments myself on this issue... the messing with the Constitution makes some queazy at best. Hey, the fact that repealing amendments is not easy (it should not be!) does not mean it is not a noble cause. Thats why to me building a wall is not enough,.. as long as out hospitals are free, food stamps are there, free citizenship for the offspring etc etc we are just paying lip service to wanting to take control of this...

Wed May 24, 02:33:00 AM  
Blogger betmo said...

i think we need to leave the constitution alone. we have plenty of other alternatives first- this plan i suppose is a start- along with pulling services from illegals. can't pull services as easily if the child is the us citizen and the one getting services- so it might work. they are already planning a national id card- so what they heck? tie this in and leave the constitution be.

Wed May 24, 09:31:00 AM  
Blogger Publius said...

But, absolutely no changes to the Constitution need to be made. What is required is an interpretation of the Amendment that actually resembles the intent of the writers. When the Amendment was written it was only intended to include freed blacks, the writers of this Amendment who were all Northern Republicans never foresaw the unintended consequences.
But, you can not take away services from illegals. You can not say that their children, regardless of citizenship, can not attend schools, you can not prevent them from using hospitals, and you can not prevent them from using public roads either. That will not work.
But, you can look at the wording of the 14th Amendment and scale back the interpretation that is now the cause for millions of anchor babies that is the true root of this problem.

Wed May 24, 02:19:00 PM  
Blogger Cubed © said...

Publius,

"But, absolutely no changes to the Constitution need to be made."

I think we need to educate our legislators; they are obviously in great need of a lesson or two in the Constitution.

You referred to the fact that the 14th Amendment was never intended to constitute a claim to citizenship just because a person was born here.

It's a little long, but worthwhile, to see what some of the Big Guns had to say about the intent of the 14th Amendment around the time it was written:

In 1866, it was recognized that the legal status of recently freed black slaves was in limbo, so the 14th Amendment was written in order to clarify it.

Senator Jacob Howard wrote: "Every person born within the limits of the United States, and subject to their jurisdiction, is by virtue of natural law and national law a citizen of the United States. This will not, of course, include persons born in the United States who are foreigners, aliens, or who belong to the families of ambassadors or foreign ministers accredited to the Government of the United States, but will include every other class of persons."

Thus, the original intent was specifically limited to freedmen, and specifically excluded "foreigners" and "aliens."

The 14th Amendment was ratified in 1868; it was NOT designed to enable illegal aliens who were breaking U.S. law to be given all manner of privileges at taxpayer expense, or to "go to the head of the line" for citizenship.

If our legislators had studied harder in school, they might know that an illegal alien mother is subject to the jurisdiction of her native country, not the U.S., as is her baby born on U.S. soil.

A bit of stickiness about the whole "born-in-the-USA-therefore-a-citizen" issue came up again a little over 100 years ago, when the decision about whether American Indians, whose reservations had been granted the status of independent nations, were citizens of the United States.

The Supreme Court held to the original, narrow intent of the 14th Amendment, and said they were not U.S. citizens; the phrase "subject to its jurisdiction" excluded them as "children of ministers, consuls, and citizens of foreign states born within the United States."

This presented a number of difficulties, so Congress decided to pass a special act, the "Citizens Act of 1924," which granted American Indians full citizenship. The act said: "The following shall be nationals and citizens of the United States at birth: 1) a person born in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof; 2) a person born in the United States to a member of an Indian, Eskimo, Aleutian, or other aboriginal tribe."

The provision "subject to the jurisdiction thereof" excludes aboriginal tribes not "subject to the jurisdiction" of the U.S. - hence, it excludes members of aboriginal peoples of foreign jurisdictions like Mexico and other Central and South American countries.

All of us who believe the mechanism exists already in the Constitution to exclude the children of illegals from automatic citizenship are right, and we need to let our woefully ignorant legislators know this.

Pass it on!

Fri May 26, 04:07:00 PM  

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