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Is Citizenship A Right or A Privilege?

Discussion in 'U.S. Politics' started by BigRob, May 22, 2009.

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Is citizenship a right or a privilege?

  1. Right

    3 vote(s)
    37.5%
  2. Privilege

    5 vote(s)
    62.5%
  1. BigRob

    BigRob Well-Known Member

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    What do you think and why?
     
  2. samsara15

    samsara15 Member

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    Both. The nation should serve its citizens, and the citizens owe the nation a debt in return. It cuts both ways, but both the goverment, and the citizen, can, and often do, fail to live up to their part of the mutual responsibility.
     
  3. Kool aid kid

    Kool aid kid New Member

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    But not just anyone has a right to citizenship to the U.S.A. Or any country
    It's a privilege not a right
     
    1 person likes this.
  4. pocketfullofshells

    pocketfullofshells Well-Known Member

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    if your born here, its a right. if you want to be one, its a privilege, if you already became one, its a right again in that it should not be taken away. Rights are given the the nation, the nation should not give rights to the people.
     
  5. BigRob

    BigRob Well-Known Member

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    Citizenship can revoked if you fail to live up to certain obligations though. Does this mean that government has the power to revoke rights? Or would you argue that is the choice of the individual to forfeit citizenship by not meeting his/her obligations?
     
  6. pocketfullofshells

    pocketfullofshells Well-Known Member

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    for a natural citizen I don't think you can revoke them. For someone who came here after, then possibly yes for very serious crimes. If you are a US Citizen I don't feel any crime can take away your citizenship...that said does not mean you cant be jailed for life, or killed for that crime...(though I am against the death penalty overall)
     
  7. BigRob

    BigRob Well-Known Member

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    Immigration and Nationality Act - LOSS OF NATIONALITY BY NATIVE-BORN OR NATURALIZED CITIZEN

    (a) A person who is a national of the United States whether by birth or naturalization, shall lose his nationality by voluntarily performing any of the following acts with the intention of relinquishing United States nationality-

    (1) obtaining naturalization in a foreign state upon his own application or upon an application filed by a duly authorized agent, after having attained the age of eighteen years; or

    (2) taking an oath or making an affirmation or other formal declaration of allegiance to a foreign state or a political subdivision thereof, after having attained the age of eighteen years; or

    (3) entering, or serving in, the armed forces of a foreign state if

    (A) such armed forces are engaged in hostilities against the United States, or

    (B) such persons serve as a commissioned or non-commissioned officer; or

    (4) (A) accepting, serving in, or performing the duties of any office, post, or employment under the government of a foreign state or a political subdivision thereof, after attaining the age of eighteen years if he has or acquires the nationality of such foreign state; or

    (B) accepting, serving in, or performing the duties of any office, post, or employment under the government of a foreign state or a political subdivision thereof, after attaining the age of eighteen years for which office, post, or employment an oath, affirmation, or declaration of allegiance is required; or

    (5) making a formal renunciation of nationality before a diplomatic or consular officer of the United States in a foreign state, in such form as may be prescribed by the Secretary of State; or

    (6) making in the United States a formal written renunciation of nationality in such form as may be prescribed by, and before such officer as may be designated by, the Attorney General, whenever the United States shall be in a state of war and the Attorney General shall approve such renunciation as not contrary to the interests of national defense; or

    (7) committing any act of treason against, or attempting by force to overthrow, or bearing arms against, the United States, violating or conspiring to violate any of the provisions of section 2383 of title 18, United States Code, or willfully performing any act in violation of section 2385 of title 18, United States Code, or violating section 2384 of said title by engaging in a conspiracy to overthrow, put down, or to destroy by force the Government of the United States, or to levy war against them, if an d when he is convicted thereof by a court martial or by a court of competent jurisdiction.

    (b) 1/ Whenever the loss of United States nationality is put in issue in any action or proceeding commenced on or after the enactment of this subsection under, or by virtue of, the provisions of this or any other Act, the burden shall be upon the person or party claiming that such loss occurred, to establish such claim by a preponderance of the evidence. Any person who commits or performs, or who has committed or performed, any act of expatriation under the provisions of this or any other Act shall be presumed to have done so voluntarily, but such presumption may be rebutted upon a showing, by a preponderance of the evidence, that the act or acts committed or performed were not done voluntarily.
     
  8. samsara15

    samsara15 Member

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    My uncle served in the British Army, as a doctor, in World War II, somewhere near or in India. As a doctor, I presume he was an officer. As far as his citizenship was concerned, as soon as he got out of the British Army, they drafted him into the American Army.
     
  9. BigRob

    BigRob Well-Known Member

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    I think this act came post WWII. But I think for your uncle's case, assuming this act did not, it probably would fall under the "with the intent" wording. I guess his intent serving in the British army would not be to give up US nationality.
     
  10. Dr.Who

    Dr.Who Well-Known Member

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    It is neither a right nor a privilege.

    It is a definition that describes a person as under the jurisdiction of the constitution. Persons under the jurisdiction of the C have duties and rights spelled out in the C.

    For example, in the 14th amendment it says:

    "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."

    If it were a right the C would not be talking about how people defined as such are subjects. If it were a privilege it would also not be talking about how citizens must do certain things. The C gives certain powers to the state some of them are about restricting the rights of citizens, those rights are not given by the C but are recognized as being inalienable in our secular constitution. The inalienable rights were previously stated to be given by God in our religious Declaration of Independence. An inalienable right cannot be alienated, surrendered or transferred, but it can be restricted.
     
  11. Mr.Dysfunctional

    Mr.Dysfunctional New Member

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    Any chance we could petition congress to add " and holding up flags of foreign countries while protesting U.S. immigration reform shall earn you deportation back to the country of the flag you were holding. Also all citizens will be free to laugh at you for hypocritically trying to sway politics in America."

    I believe that it is a privilege but also agree with Samsara that it is not a power the government can flagrantly wave above our heads. Unless your TRYING to become a citizen of a foreign nation or real evidence shows you to be in co-hoots with them then it should hold for life.

    Point being as in the movie "Star Ship troops" where military service (( or some form of governmental service I'm sure )) granted "citizenship"... the right to vote and probably a host of different rights.
     
  12. Andy

    Andy Well-Known Member

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    So then the question becomes "is being naturalized a right?"
     
  13. PLC1

    PLC1 Moderator Staff Member

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    The government can revoke rights via due process of law. Every time a citizen is deprived of liberty, i.e., thrown in jail, as a consequence of having been convicted of a crime, it has revoked the rights of said citizen.

    Citizenship is a right for those who are born here. That is made very clear in the 14th. Amendment. That right, just like any other right, can be revoked.

    What the government can't do is to outline obligations and decide that those obligations have to be met in order to continue to be a citizen.
     
  14. USCitizen

    USCitizen New Member

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    I disagree with you. Just because you are BORN here does not make it right. I was BORN of an American but lived in Europe most of my life. But, I am now living here because of that birthright. I am a Dual National of the UK and the US. I was born of a British mother and American father. So, just because I wasn't BORN here doesn't mean it's not my right.
     
  15. PLC1

    PLC1 Moderator Staff Member

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    Check out the 14th. Amendment of the Constitution, and see if you agree with that.
     
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