Misconceptions about the 14th Amendment and Native Birth

In a National Review commentary, Edward J. Erler stated:

 A correct understanding of the intent of the framers of the 14th Amendment and legislation passed by Congress in the late 19th century and in 1923 extending citizenship to American Indians provide ample proof that Congress has constitutional power to define who is within the “jurisdiction of the United States” and therefore eligible for citizenship.

Although he is a senior fellow at the Claremont Institute, he was raised like the four generations before him (us) to believe things that are simply not historically accurate.  Because of our estranged modern ignorance, he made four mistakes in that one simple sentence.  They are not as important as what he got right, but they are nevertheless still important in understanding reality.

The first error is in stating that Congress was given “constitutional power” to define who is within the “jurisdiction of the United States”.  It is absurd to state that the exercise of authority is “ample proof” that that authority is constitutional.  If that were true then all authority exercised could be deemed constitutional by its mere exercise.

Second, the source of authority that he was actually referring to, (the 14th Amendment) contains absolutely no mention of Congress having power to define who is “within” US jurisdiction.
Understand this: “within” means inside, and inside refers to position or location within a specified area, -in this case the area or jurisdiction defined by US borders.  That is reference to the territorial meaning of the word.  That meaning is not found in nor related to the citizenship clause of the 14th Amendment.
What is  found is reference to “SUBJECTION TO the jurisdiction”.   The difference is gigantic.  That reference is to political authority, not territoriality and boundaries.
The amendment states:
All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and the State wherein they reside.
If one was not born to a foreign father subject to the full political authority of the State government of residence, along with the Federal government, then one was not born subject since “subject” means fully subject.  That in turn means subject to the obligation to defend one’s own home, homeland, county, state, and nation.
Those who have that natural responsibility are those who are national members, members of American society, legal members, -members who are legally obligated to answer the call of duty when or if it ever comes.
Illegal aliens and foreign visitors or guests are not under any such obligation or potential duty because America is not their home and they have no obligation to defend it.  They are exempt, just like foreign ambassadors.  Therefore, any child born to them cannot be subject to an authority of adulthood which they did not inherit from their father.  They therefore were not born as citizens of the United States since they were not born subject.
Third, the wording: “power to define who is within the ‘jurisdiction of the United States'” is faulty since no such wording is found anywhere in the amendment, making the use of quotation marks a definite mistake.
Finally, is it false to state that by providing American Natives with citizenship, Congress was exercising proven constitutional authority when just the opposite is the case.
Congress had no authority at all to extend citizenship to anyone, including Native Americans.  The only authority given to Congress was to author a nation-wide uniform rule for the States to adopt for their naturalization proceedings so that there was only a single standard across all of the States (which also retained authority over immigration).

So Congress could not constitutionally define who was or was not a citizen and that was why there was such confusion between State citizenship and national citizenship.  Both levels of government had incontestable authority over their own determination of citizenship.  The States could make citizens of anyone as they so chose, but if the national standard was not adhered to then such a State citizen would not be a citizen of the nation, meaning the national government, -even if other states choose to recognize citizenship that was not congressionally approved.  But I digress…

 To give US citizenship to Native Americans required the consent of We, the People since such a recognition and inclusion was not a part of the compact of the States when the Constitution was ratified.  It could only be made fully legitimate via a constitutional amendment.  But Congress was too full of itself to even consider that its power was limited.

“Birthright citizenship is the policy whereby the children of illegal aliens born within the geographical limits of the U.S. are entitled to American citizenship.”

 This statement employs a term that is completely misused and misapplied; “birthright citizenship”.  A birthright is a right with which one is born, such as the firstborn of a royal family. It is his birthright to inherit the throne.  That right is by birth because he was born first and of royal blood.  It has nothing whatsoever to do with where he was born.
An accurate replacement would be a more awkward expression but it would not include the word “right” because that which is via permission of the host is NOT a right.  It might need to be “native-birth naturalized citizenship”.
“It was in 1868 that a definition of citizenship entered the Constitution with the ratification of the 14th Amendment.”
It is not nit-picking to point out that what entered the Constitution was NOT a “definition” but a description.  Descriptions do not define, they describe.  Those so described are citizens.  They are not “defined” as the only citizens because they were the rare minority of citizens (born of ex-slaves or aliens), with the vast majority being undescribed anywhere in the Constitution other than by the English language term of “natural born citizen” (the 97%).

Jurisdiction understood as allegiance,… -owing exclusive political allegiance to the U.S.”

 Outside of the military, allegiance is a concept unrelated to the civilian life of the self-governed.  What they owe is obedience to their duty, to their obligation or responsibility toward their own, -their own home and country and people.  They are co-members like the crew of a lifeboat.  They do not owe allegiance to the lifeboat but to each other and their mutual survival.
“-there has never been an explicit holding by the Supreme Court that the children of illegal aliens are automatically accorded birthright citizenship.
In the case of Wong Kim Ark (1898) the Court ruled that a child born in the U.S. of legal aliens was entitled to “birthright citizenship” under the 14th Amendment.
The error in these sentences is one of focus.  He couches the subject as one between illegal and legal aliens when it is beyond that simply dichotomy.  It is one of residence vs non-residence first and foremost.  Were the parents immigrants or non-immigrants?
Non-immigrants cannot give birth to US citizens.
Are illegal “immigrants” really and truly immigrants according to the recognition of the US government or are they invaders, colonizers, usurpers of American space?  Whatever the answer is, if they are not legal immigrants, then they are not fully subject to the full jurisdiction of the US government, and would not have registered for the Selective Service as is required of all male citizens and legal immigrants between 18 and 25.
It is the male class of legal permanent residents and citizens of the United States which is the only class fully subject to the full political jurisdiction of the nation.  It is their blood that is the price of remaining free in a world that is not all totalitarian.  A child born to one of them, or those of their class, (male) is most definitely born subject to the same authority as the father (if that child is male).
Remember, when the amendment was written, women were only quasi-citizens, demi-citizens, like minor children who were the property of their husband.  Foreign women could not become naturalized citizens.  That was their husband’s responsibility.  They became citizens through him.  Their proof of citizenship was their marriage certificate and their husband’s naturalization papers.  They had no citizenship of their own.
“Congress used its legislative authority under Section Five of the 14th Amendment to determine who was within the jurisdiction of the U.S.”
 That is false on multiple fronts.  The section Five enactment authority clause was not used to determine “who was within the jurisdiction” because that ambiguous language implies determining who is inside the US., -with “jurisdiction” referring to territory instead of referring to who is “under” or “subject to” the jurisdictional political authority of the government.
Congress had already determined who was subject by writing conscription law during the Civil War that used language which failed to exempt male immigrants who were not citizens but were permanent residents.  They, although still technically subject to their foreign monarch, were forced to submit to military service because they also were members of American society just like male citizens.
Children born to them in the US were viewed by their State government as common law State citizens even if not recognized as such by the administration in power in Washington.  But after the US v Wong Kim Ark supreme court opinion in 1898, such alien-born children were recognized as citizens of the nation.
But children born in the US were not so recognized by the court if born of non-immigrant aliens.  The father of Barack Obama was such a non-immigrant which means Jr. was not born as a 14th Amendment US citizen.
Even if born “within” the jurisdiction, he was not born “subject to” the jurisdiction that was political or civic in nature.  So if he was not born as even a “birthright citizen”, then how could he possibly be viewed as “a natural born citizen” as the Constitution requires of all Presidents??
 ~     ~     ~

The purpose of this exposition is not to diminish the excellent and vital points made by Edward J. Erler, which are essential to understanding the subject of citizenship, but simply to clarify the few areas of misunderstanding which are standard in this era of misconceptions.

We were all raised to believe things that were not true, -to believe things that we were not taught, but which we were not taught were wrong either.  Education by silence is no education at all, and so everyone was raised uneducated, -as uneducated as the educators, and their educators,… going back to the 19th century when the bastardization began big-time.

And so grew the national myth that we are all citizens by being born within US borders, when that has never been true except for those native-born of foreigners. They, by the British convention of common law, were deemed to be subjects of the Crown, and later citizens of the State or Commonwealth of their birth which was one of the American republics.

But those born of Americans were Americans for that very reason, -not because of where their mother happened to be when they were ready to exit her womb.
Natural citizenship is a natural right of belonging which is passed on from generation to generation, continuing the populating of the nation by reproduction, -not by a gift of national law bestowed by god-like government to only those lucky souls fortunate enough to have been born within the United States.

But that is exactly the actual origin of citizenship of those native-born of aliens.  It is that common law gift of citizenship that made those like Marco Rubio United States citizens, and nothing else.  They, without American parents, was not and could never be one born as a natural citizen and therefore eligible to serve as the President of the United States

by Adrien R. Nash August 2015  obama–nation.com



About arnash
“When you find yourself on the side of the majority, it’s time to pause and reflect.” - Mark Twain - Politicians and diapers - change 'em often, for the same reason. "Government is like a baby. An alimentary canal with a big appetite at one end and no sense of responsibility at the other." Ronald Reagan "Liberals claim to want to give a hearing to other views, but then are shocked and offended to discover that there are other views." William F. Buckley, Jr. “The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt.” - Bertrand Russell The people are the masters of both Congress and the courts, not to overthrow the Constitution, but to overthrow the men who pervert it. Abraham Lincoln “Good people sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.” - George Orwell “Satan will use a lake of truth to hide a pint of poison”.

7 Responses to Misconceptions about the 14th Amendment and Native Birth

  1. slcraignbc says:

    All those words based on the WRONG premise.

    Erler was NOT stating that the authority sprung from the 14th but rather from the Constitutional Clause at A1S8C4 and reinforced by A1S9C1 post 1808;

    … ” … The Congress shall have power … To establish a uniform rule of naturalization, … throughout the United States;”


    … ” … The migration or importation of such persons as any of the states now existing shall think proper to admit, shall not be prohibited by the Congress prior to the year one thousand eight hundred and eight, but a tax or duty may be imposed on such importation, not exceeding ten dollars for each person….”

    “…throughout the United States (and) any of the states now existing …”

    So, I’ll let you seek out the loop-hole that allows a person to be within the limits of the U.S. without PERMISSION from the Congress that does not break the Laws made in pursuance of the Constitution on the subject of immigration and citizenship.

  2. arnash says:


    “The United States did not limit immigration in 1868 when the Fourteenth Amendment was ratified. Thus there were, by definition, no illegal immigrants and the issue of citizenship for children of those here in violation of the law was nonexistent.
    Granting of automatic citizenship to children of illegal alien mothers is a recent and totally inadvertent and unforeseen result of the amendment and the Reconstructionist period in which it was ratified. ”

    In 1866, Senator Jacob Howard clearly spelled out the intent of the 14th Amendment by stating:
    “Every person born within the limits of the United States, and subject to THEIR jurisdiction, is by virtue of natural law and national law a citizen of the United States. 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 accredited to the Government of the United States,…”

    Four facts are brought to mind by that statement.
    1. The Constitution contains no mention of immigration, meaning that, as before the Constitution, it was left (per the 9th and 10th Amendments) strictly to the sovereign authority of the nation-states that allied in the new constitutional alliance.

    2. All immigrants were legal immigrants unless they were spies who snuck in over the Canadian border.
    3. Congress, upon the illegitimate “passage” of the 14th Amendment continued to have no national authority over the matter of immigration, nor a national policy or statute.

    4. One of the authors of the citizenship clause made it unmistakably clear that the JURISDICTION under which an alien baby must have been born was that of State jurisdiction, not federal INS authority since it was not even conceived of yet. It was the States almost exclusively that performed naturalization proceedings for their immigrants who sought US citizenship.

    “”Every person born within the limits of the United States, and subject to THEIR jurisdiction,…”

    What was one of the powers that a State could exercise over all able-bodied young males? It was mandatory service in the State Militia as a requirement of citizenship and permanent residence. Immigrants who had children in the US were subject to that authority, that full, complete, maximum political authority, -NOT mere State social law which even Ambassadors, and everyone else, were obligated to obey.

    Those children, millions of them across the full breadth of the nation, were born subject to fathers who were subject to State conscription authority, -but NOT born subject to almighty government. Babies are NOT subject to government, -only adults are fully subject or else there would be no such thing as juvenile courts. Juveniles are near to being adults and thus near to being full citizens, but are not yet and are thus treated as pre-citizens, quasi-citizens, demi-citizens. [Women used to be in a similar category.]

    Who was NOT subject to the political authority of the State governments? Women, children, foreign visitors and ministers, Native Americans, and transient Gypsies. These facts come with implications that have never been addressed nor acknowledged, including that if an unmarried foreign visitor gave birth in the US her baby would not be a State citizen and thus not be a US citizens either because she would not have been subject to the political authority of the State in which the birth took place. She would not have been subject as a foreign guest nor as a female, -doubly non-subject.
    Also, a married foreign couple in the US, with no permanent domicile but with a home back in another country, would not have been members of American society, nor State society, and thus would be under no obligation of training in the State Militia for the purpose of defense of a place that was not their home, while they remained loyal and obedient to their own foreign government.
    Visitors and guests cannot be forced by law, and never have been, to defend the hotel in which they are sleeping, nor the State, nor the nation. They are thus exempt from the 14th Amendment-mentioned subjection required in order for a native-born child of theirs to be considered a US citizen.

    That, of course, means that Barack Obama was not born as a 14th Amendment citizen, but Marco Rubio, and Bobby Jindahl were not born as natural born citizens but as 14th Amendment citizens only since they were born of subject immigrants in the United States. They therefore are not eligible to be President.

    [In Elk v Wilkins, 1884, “The Court essentially stated that the status of the parents determines the citizenship of the child. To qualify children for birthright citizenship, based on the 14th Amendment, parents must owe “direct and immediate allegiance” to the U.S. and be “completely subject” to its jurisdiction.” That means they must be citizens or legal permanent resident immigrants.


  3. arnash says:

    slcraignbc, are you really so ignorant as to not know that the ”
    “importation” clause was about banning the importation of slaves after the year 1808?

    • slcraignbc says:

      Are YOU really so ignorant as to say that IMPORTATION and IMMIGRATION are NOT the SAME THING …….

      Prior to the 1808 trigger the States “imported” and or “ALLOWED” whomever they chose to reside in their State.

      POST 1808 the STATES no longer were in authority to CHOOSE who immigrated into any of the several States.


      See Sections 4,5,6,7

      Why do you bother to try and best me….???? You would do better to JOIN ME in seeking a solicitor to be the face of a WINNING Petition to the SCOTUS.

  4. arnash says:

    You are a moron if you think that slaves migrate. They were PROPERTY! Property does not migrate. They were NOT Immigrants. Immigration IS NOT FOUND IN THE CONSTITUTION.

    But the banning of the IMPORTATION of “persons” (who were slaves) WAS extremely important to the northern states. They could not put the abolishment of slavery into the Constitution but they managed to put in the end of the importation of slaves. They hoped the trade would gradually die out. But the cotton gin changed all of that, making slaves more valuable than ever. But they had to be domestically born and raised.

    Your baseless proclamation that “POST 1808 the STATES no longer were in authority to CHOOSE who immigrated into any of the several States.” is the absolute height of ignorance and arrogance. Did you deliberately avoid reading my previous comment in which I explained the exact opposite???

    I have to ask because you gave no response to it. Silence is supposed to mean assent.
    The reason that you gave no response was because you do not know a single fact to dispute what I wrote, but instead you pretend that you know something that is in fact false.
    I will leave you in your ignorance since it is willful. If you cared to know the truth you would have learned from what I aimed at ignorant souls such as yourself.

    Are you incapable of comprehending the meaning of “their jurisdiction”?? Please explain where and when the States surrendered their sovereign authority over immigration to the federal executive branch. IT WASN’T UNTIL A CENTURY LATER! You need to read the history of immigration and stop pontificating on matters of which you are ignorant.

    • slcraignbc says:

      You have a READING COMPREHENSION problem.

      Slaves were IMPORTED as CHATTEL PROPERTY along with numerous “INDENTURED and BOND Servants” from European Countries, (mostly white) … and too, free white men & families.

      Section 9.

      The migration or importation of such persons as any of the states now existing shall think proper to admit, shall not be prohibited by the Congress prior to the year one thousand eight hundred and eight, but a tax or duty may be imposed on such importation, not exceeding ten dollars for each person.

      “shall not be prohibited by the Congress prior” , which is written in a manner making it IMPLICIT that AFTER 1808 the Congress shall have the power to PROHIBIT in a manner they deem PROPER.

      Did you NOT read the sections of the 1798 Act that BEGAN identifying ALL “immigrants” as they entered the Country….???

      Any way, you are not interested in ACTUAL HISTORY and the ACTUAL SOURCES of what ACTUALLY was written and ACTUALLY OCCURRED.

      So I’ll leave you to your alternate reality and consider you just another lost cause that enjoys disseminating erroneous information.

  5. arnash says:

    Again, you are a moron for arguing against what you blindly conceived to be my position when I had stated the exact opposite, namely the very thing that you are asserting as an echo of what I wrote!! Talk about a comprehension problem!! You are a blind person calling a two-eyed man a blind-man.

    You started and ended your supposedly illuminating response with no point whatsoever. But it appears that you essentially disproved your own point by making mine. Thanks!
    So here’s the bottom line:
    1. Slaves were not “persons” who migrated or were considered immigrants. Nothing written about immigration applied to them.
    2. Congress was prohibited from banning the “migration or importation” of slaves until after 1808. In that context, the use of the word “migration” did NOT refer to slaves migrating to America but to slave owners migrating to territories under the authority of the federal government. Congress could not ban them from migrating with their slaves into the western and southern territories.

    Now, what exactly do you not understand about such plain and simple English? I know your logic center is out of whack, but surely it can’t be too defective to grasp these facts.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: