Currently, one can become a U.S. citizen by going through a lengthy process with the Department of Immigration Services, passing a test, and swearing an oath or they can simply be born in the United States. These so called “birth citizens” are also known by detractors as “anchor babies” because they anchor the non-citizen parents to this country. In fact, one of the main reasons pro-immigration forces cite as a reason to grant citizenship to illegals is if their children are U.S. born then sending the parents back to their home country would “rip families apart.”
Were we to live in a rational world and were people to accept the consequences of their actions the rationale that someone shouldn’t come to the U.S. illegally, have a child, and expect to stay would be taken for granted.
At the time of its founding, it made sense for the United States to recognize anybody born here as being a citizen as the population, excluding American Indians and those in the territories, was about 2.5 million. American immigration law concerning “birth citizens” has changed over the years, essentially, the current version we have came into being in 1868, after the Civil War, with the passage of the 14th Amendment:
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.
In 1870 the U.S. population was about 38 1/2 million.
In 2010 the U.S. population is 308 million.
American citizenship laws need to be reformed. At the time when this country needed as many citizens as it could get to fill out the country, allowing anybody born here to be an American made sense. After nearly 225 years of growth, it is time to turn off the tap. A smaller population means fewer resources are needed, a higher standard of living for everybody, and lowered costs for housing, food, goods, and services. Finally, illegal immigrants may not choose to come to America to have their children if they knew they would not automatically become citizens.
According to a recent study:
An estimated 10.8 million illegal immigrants were living in the U.S. as of January 2009, according to the Homeland Security Department. The Pew Hispanic Center estimates that as of 2008, there were 3.8 million illegal immigrants in this country whose children are U.S. citizens.
Arizona’s Republican state Sen. Russell Pearce has proposed that children born in Arizona are not automatically entitled to become citizens. While his idea is a good one, it would be unconstitutional were he to get Arizona to sign it into law. And we all know how difficult it is to pass a new Constitutional amendment.
Unfortunately, neither political party has made any serious attempts to reform our immigration and citizenship laws. Instead of requiring at least one parent to be an American citizen before their children are granted citizenship, we have millions of children of illegal immigrants “anchored” to this country and a ready excuse why we should reward them having broken the law with citizenship.
The fact is, Republicans and Democrats don’t want to anger Hispanics because they are hoping to build their 21st Century majorities from this bloc. The people who will pay for this cynical move are, ironically, U.S. citizens.