“Alexander James Frank Brimelow is an American, although I was still a British subject and his mother a Canadian when he shot into the New York delivery room, yelling indignantly, one summer dawn in 1991. This is because of the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. It states in part: '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 14th Amendment was passed after the Civil War in an attempt to stop Southern states denying their newly freed slaves the full rights of citizens. But the wording is general. So it has been interpreted to mean that any child born in the United States is automatically a citizen. Even if its mother is a foreigner. Even if she's just passing through.
“I am delighted that Alexander is an American. However, I do feel slightly, well, guilty that his fellow Americans had so little choice in the matter. But at least Maggy and I had applied for and been granted legal permission to live in the United States. There are currently an estimated 3.5 million to 4 million foreigners who have just arrived and settled here in defiance of American law. When these illegal immigrants have children in the United States, why, those children are automatically American citizens too.
“And right now, two-thirds of births in Los Angeles County hospitals are to illegal-immigrant mothers.
“All of which is just another example of one of my central themes:The United States has lost control of its borders…”
—Peter Brimelow, writing in Alien Nation, 1995
“The assumption that Hamdi is a citizen ignores the critical phrase 'subject to the jurisdiction thereof.' That phrase means United States citizenship requires more than the accident of being born on U.S. soil—an allegiance to the United States is necessary.
“Yaser Hamdi's parents were Saudi citizens. They were working in the U.S. temporarily. They had no intention of staying or pursuing American citizenship. They were not fully “subject to the jurisdiction” of the United States.
“For example, Mr. Hamdi Sr. could not be drafted into the United States military. Mr. and Mrs. Hamdi could not be guilty of treason—they owed no allegiance to the United States. Neither does their Saudi son.
“We are filing this amicus brief to alert the Court to the broad ramifications for the future of the United States of the erroneous presumption of citizenship for an enemy alien such as Hamdi who does not now have, and never had, any allegiance to the United States.”
—The Citizen Child Clause: “A Huge Hidden Cost” Remarks by Edith Hakola, Executive Vice President, The Center for American Unity, to a Press lunch at Washington D.C.'s Capitol Hill Club to announce the Center's Amicus Brief In The Hamdi Case, March 25, 2004Yesterday, the Supreme Court handed down decisions in various detention cases, including the Hamdi case. This involved an Arab whose U.S. citizenship comes from his birth in Louisiana in 1980, when his parents were briefly contract workers in the United States.
Very shortly after Hamdi's birth, he went to Saudi Arabia, where he absorbed the typical Arab/Muslim hatred of America and went off to fight in Afghanistan, where he was captured.
The Court dodged—except for a hint by two dissenting justices—the question VDARE.com and the Center for American Unity raised in its amicus brief.
This was not, “Can Hamdi be locked up for being a Muslim terrorist, in spite of his American Citizenship?” but—“Why is he considered an American citizen at all?” (Click here to see the CAU Press Release on Hamdi decision).
Consider the following hypothetical case:
Imagine that an invading army enters the United States, wearing uniforms and carrying arms, and behaving exactly like an army, but bringing their wives.
This is what the European armies of the early nineteenth century did, during the Napoleonic Wars, after all. Women frequently gave birth in foreign countries.
If this hypothetical invading army stayed long enough to have children, would the enemy soldiers' sons and daughters be American citizens?
Would those children have the right to return to the US, years later, and sponsor their soldier fathers, who would presumably have been expelled in this hypothetical war?
The idea is ridiculous.
However, it happens today that the illegal immigrant population is larger than an invading army. And the American-born children of that invading army are automatically citizens today—under what is merely an interpretation of the Fourteenth Amendment.
Many other countries have limited “birthright citizenship” to citizens and legal residents.
The United States can too. All it would require would be a small amount of backbone in the Executive Branch, and/or a small amount of common sense in the Judicial Branch, and/or a little concern for the national interest in the Legislative Branch.
This year, though, all three seem to be absent