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Thinking the 14th Amendment Through

Some people believe the act of being born in the United States is not enough to qualify for American citizenship.  They think the 14th Amendment prohibits children of illegal immigrants from earning a birth right in America.

But what would they say if they found they were technically illegal immigrants themselves?  By their own definition, they may discover that their parents, grandparents or even great grandparents may not have been citizens,  disqualifying them from the right to call themselves an American.

Immigrants have been coming to America for hundreds of years.  Did all of them come though legally?  Of course not.

Irish, English and European immigrants flocked to the United States.  They came for the same reasons Mexican immigrants come today…to survive.

What if you’re the grand child of an immigrant who never became legal?  Now you’re 45 years old, with a beautiful wife and three adorable children.  You’re a business owner and a patriotic American.  Are you a citizen?

Maybe… maybe not.

What if 45 year old, John Smith, discovered his great grandparents never became citizens.  Using the logic of those who say the 14th Amendment prohibits birth right to those born of immigrants, Mr. Smith would actually be an illegal immigrant.

Would he and his entire family be rounded up by ICE and sent to England? What would happen to their home?  The mortgage?  The auto loans?  What about the family business?  Is it all up for grabs now that the Smith’s have been deported?  Of course not.

Does this path make any sense?  It doesn’t to me.

I agree we need to document everyone in our country, and as it pertains to those children born of Illegals living and working in America…under the jurisdiction of America, I believe they are citizens by birth.  This topic was feverishly debated in the mid 1800’s.

Supporters asked the same questions of children born of Chinese Immigrants in California.  Should they be considered citizens?  Senator John Conness of California said the answer should be ‘yes.’ ‘The children of all parentage whatever, born in California, should be regarded and treated as citizens of the United States, entitled to equal civil rights with other citizens,’ Mr. Conness said.”

In thinking about the 14th Amendment, I conclude there is room for clarification…however, until it is clarified, being born in America has been a qualifier since 1866.  If there is an Amendment coming, then all those born in this country, currently residing in the United States should be “grandfathered” in.

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