Newsmax.com reported: “A growing throng of Central American migrants resumed their advance toward the U.S. border in southern Mexico on Sunday, overwhelming Mexican government attempts to stop them at the border.”
On Monday, President Donald Trump rightly declared that this was a national emergency, assuming this caravan attempts to cross our border illegally.
Perhaps, like many in America, this caravan of people believe the fast track to becoming a citizen is to cross the border and then have a child. In doing so, not only is the child considered an American citizen, but the parents as well because now someone has to take care of that “American” child.
The Mexican government, in a lawsuit against Texas, declared, “The denial of birth certificates to U.S. citizen children born to immigrant parents not only jeopardizes their dignity and well-being, but could threaten the unique relationship between Mexico and Texas.”
Mexico believes these children are instantaneously U.S. citizens as soon as they are born anywhere on U.S. soil.
Rightly named the Father of the Constitution, James Madison asserted, “If the sense in which the Constitution was accepted and ratified by the Nation … be not the guide in expounding it, there can be no security for a faithful exercise of its powers.”
For the purpose of understanding this issue of immigration and citizenship many people look to the Fourteenth Amendment.
So let’s focus on the guide.
“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.”
The six critical words, “…and subject to the jurisdiction thereof,” lay at the foundation of what we understand to be the jurisdiction phrase:
The Senate debate before the Fourteenth Amendment’s ratification makes clear that the Citizenship Clause’s proponents were careful to preclude any automatic grant of citizenship based only on birth within the territory of the United States.
The primary concern of the amendment’s proponents was the extension of civil rights to recently freed slaves, to forestall any denial of citizenship to freed slaves, and to overturn the Dred Scott decision explicitly.
Introducing the proposed amendment, Senator Jacob Merritt Howard of Michigan believed the Citizenship Clause was “simply declaratory of what I regard as the law of the land already.”
He went on to say specifically whom the law excluded: “This will not, of course, include persons born in the United States who are foreigners, aliens, who belong to the families of ambassadors or foreign ministers.”
It is absurd to reason that, through breaking United States laws and entering and remaining here illegally, an illegal alien has somehow transferred his allegiance from his home country to the United States. It is more absurd still to allege that, by breaking into its territory, the illegal alien subjects himself willingly to the jurisdiction of the nation he has invaded.
If the caravan seeks to avert our border and our laws, then I pose the question: “Should they even be allowed to come into America, let alone stay long enough to give birth to a child, simply so they can manipulate the law and try to remain here illegally?”
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The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Barb Wire.