The Debate over Birthright Citizenship

Until recently, citizenship in the Fourteenth Amendment was considered to encompass all people born in America, even the children of illegal immigrants.  In his op-ed “Birthright of a Nation” from the New York Times, Peter H. Schuck states that these “anchor babies,” as the children are sometimes called, have become the center of an overwhelming controversy.  Because the citizenship clause of the Fourteenth Amendment was originally developed in regards to the issue of slavery and in response to the controversial Dred Scott decision, it did not consider illegal immigrants, mainly because, according to Schuck, the mid-nineteenth century witnessed no limits on immigration.  Schuck believes that children of illegal immigrants should be eased into citizenship, perhaps applying by the age of 10.  This ability to compromise, by declaring that the “anchor babies” should not automatically become citizens, offers a creative solution to a question that has Congress preparing for hearings in the fall of this year.


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The Debate over Birthright Citizenship — 1 Comment

  1. I was looking for something completely different,got your page The Debate over Birthright Citizenship | History 404: US Constitution Seminar and found it Interesting.Nice Post on born babies…

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