Natural Born Citizenship
There’s a wide-spread lack of understanding of the meaning of the word “natural” (as used in Article II of the US Constitution). Natural is not, and never has been, interchangeable with the word “native”. Native refers to the land in which one is born, the land of ones ancestry, ones country, though not necessarily ones nation because nations appear and disappear but the land is forever. To be born in a certain country usually makes one a native of the nation that occupies that country, but being a native is not the same as being a citizen. Moses was a native born Egyptian, as was the entire Hebrew nation, but while he was a citizen of Egypt, they were not because they were not natural born Egyptians, (while he was adopted). He also was not a natural born Egyptian because he was a natural born Hebrew, born to a Hebrew mother and father and a natural part of the Hebrew people who remained a separate and distinct people even though Egypt was their only home and had been for many centuries. But Egypt was the home of the Egyptians for many millennia (and all were conscious of that distinction). So while the Hebrew nation/people occupied Egyptian soil, within the Egyptian nation (political entity), which occupied the country of Egypt (geographical entity), the Hebrews were born into a society in which they were not natural born citizens even though they were native born subjects.
The distinction between the land of ones nativity and the nation of ones citizenship is of paramount importance. The clearest evidence of that fact is the example of Kuwait. When the Iraqi army conquered Kuwait, it did not conquer the nation of Kuwait, only the country of Kuwait, because the nation of Kuwait fled into exile where it still existed until it was able to return to the country of Kuwait and repossess the land. Any child born to a Kuwaiti abroad was not a citizen of the land of its birth but was instead a natural born Kuwaiti and part of the Kuwaiti nation because it was born from parents who were Kuwaiti. Kuwaiti citizenship was its natural inheritance by birth. No law was needed to make it so, it was so by nature of its birth to Kuwaiti citizens.
German parents who delivered a child in Nazi occupied France didn’t give birth to a French citizen but a German citizen because the child was German by birth to German parents, and thus a German citizen.
So, (with more examples to follow), let’s examine the meaning of the word “natural”. That which is Natural comes by nature. Nature is biological, not geographical. You could draw geographical boundaries on the moon, or Mars but there is nothing of nature on either because they are barren wastelands. Nature only exists where there is life. For something to be natural it has to come from nature, not geography, nor politics. Whatever is natural is beyond the power of any law-making or enforcing entity to change, just like inalienable rights with which humans are born. So the association of the word “natural” with the word “born” refers to a biological association, not a geographical association. The association of the word “native” with the word “born” refers to a geographical association, and not a biological association. So it can be said that the land of ones nativity is not always the same as the nation of ones citizenship although it is generally almost universally so. That has changed in the United States due to the general acceptance of the words of the 14th Amendment at their simplest interpretation.
The definition of a country as a delineated geographical entity is different from what constitutes the nation that occupies that geography, and both can change over time. Germany, leading up to WWII felt that areas in other nations were a natural part of the country of Germany, and so, by invasion, they took steps to make those areas in reality to be part of the nation of Germany. But time proved that countries are one thing and nations are another and they don’t always and forever overlap perfectly. So nativity, the country of ones birth, is not synonymous with the nation of ones citizenship. What happened to Yugoslavia and Czechoslovakia also demonstrates this point. Having citizenship in either of those countries by reason of native birth or natural born citizenship eventually became void because both the countries and the nations ceased to exist. Then citizenship was determined by geography or choice. This split happened because natural born members of various groups didn’t mix into a new hybrid group with a new identity. The split wasn’t because of where individuals were or were not born, but because of who they were born to. Ones membership in a group came by the nature of their parentage, not their nativity.
Lastly, there’s the example of Native Americans, native Australians, and slaves. The native Americas and Australians were truly both native born and natural born members of their nations/peoples and their country was the land that they belonged to by geography and parentage. Where as slaves were not native born citizens of any country since the soil that they were born on was irrelevant and immaterial to anything in a legal or cultural way. They were natural born Africans and natural born slaves since those were the only things that they inherited from their parents. When an American or Australian native couple was transported to Britain during the colonial era, and gave birth to a child there, that child would be a natural born member of their tribe-nation even though the land of their nativity was not the same as, the land of their origin. Was it the legal position of the British government that such a child was under the jurisdiction of the crown and not their parents, even though they were only visitors? That’s not reasonable, fair, nor sane.
The Vikings traveled and settled far and wide. Their off-spring were Vikings regardless of whether they were born in the native homeland, or in Greenland, or in Europe or Russia. They were natural born Vikings. All their loyalty was to their own kind, not to the soil on which they happened to be born.
The framers of the Constitution required that the US President be a naturally born member of the group -which is: citizens of the U.S. They required that the President’s citizenship be citizenship conferred on him at birth, by birth to parents who were US citizens, and possibly, in an even stricter sense, also native born. In other words, his citizenship had to be citizenship that he inherited, citizenship that came naturally, not by law or statute, nor geography. If geography was meant to be required, it was meant to be in addition to natural citizenship, not in place of it. They meant to insure that his loyalty was solely to the United States due to his parents being loyal citizens of the United States. That is the reason why they put that requirement (loyalty) ahead of the 2nd requirement (maturity) and the 3rd requirement (residency). Loyalty by natural citizenship was the only way to assure that a native born loyalist citizen was not imbued with the command of the United States military, which he could use to the harm of the republic and its citizens.
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The Nature of being Natural Born
Native birth refers to place of birth, land of birth, geography and borders. Natural birth refers to biology, the biology of ones parentage and what that conveys to the off-spring in terms of culture, religion, personal values, loyalties, and political values. It has absolutely nothing to do with geography. The phrase “natural born citizen” is an adaptation from natural science. Natural born citizenship is something conveyed in the legal realm that is the human-law equivalent of that which is conveyed in the biological realm.
A natural citizen is one born to citizens, as creatures are naturally born from like creatures. Tigers give birth to tigers. Baby tigers are natural born tigers. But if a male lion mates with a female tiger it does not result in a natural born tiger, but in a liger. Also, if a male tiger mates with a female lion they do not produce a natural born lion, but a tigon. If a horse mates with a donkey, it does not produce a natural born horse or donkey but a mule -which is not natural, and is sterile and unable to reproduce. So it is with race and nationality.
A black father and Caucasian mother do not produce a natural born Caucasian, nor a natural born African or black, they produce a hybrid, because of the duality of their genetics. A Russian father and Chinese mother do not produce a natural born Russian, nor Chinese, child. Russians give birth to Russians, Germans give birth to Germans, Eskimos give birth to Eskimos, and Vikings gave birth to Vikings, regardless of where they found themselves.
Similarly, a native citizen and a foreign citizen do not produce a natural born native nor a natural born foreigner but a combination, resulting in dual citizenship (and divided loyalty) if the circumstances don’t counter it (such as abandonment or death). Natural born citizenship is automatically or naturally conveyed to the off-spring regardless of location, although for the vast majority of people their birth location is the land of their parents’ citizenship.
Those who are born to citizens are citizens by birth. Those who are born to foreigners are foreigners by birth, and those who are off-spring of both are neither, but rather they’re both, (making them dual citizens) But with humans loyalty can be ingrained not only from ones parents and group, but also from the land that one is raised on and the nation that occupies that land.
Dual-citizens are no more natural born citizens than ligers are natural born lions or tigers. Therefore to doubly insure loyalty to the United States, the founders went with the conventional meaning of natural birth which was a native citizen born to American citizens.
There are 8 basic categories of Birth & Citizenship in the U.S.: 1. Native-born to American parents. 2 . Foreign born to American parents 3. Foreign born to foreign parents but Naturalized 4. Native born to Naturalized parents 5. Native born to un-Naturalized parents 6. U.S. born to foreign diplomats, or foreign visitors. 7. Born abroad to Naturalized parents 8. various combinations of the above.
And in the last brain-dead century one has to include a 5th class: native born of illegal foreign parents, -this being because of a very literal erroneous reading of the 14th amendment.
The common conflation of “citizen”, or “native born citizen” with natural born citizens results from that fact that historically they both have described over 99.9% of US citizens. The only way to distinguish the two almost identical classes (not identical in principle but in “practice”) is by understanding the full meaning behind the word “natural”. Without that understanding people are going to make the common logic-error of thinking the terms are interchangeable. But just because 99.9% of natural born citizens are also native born, it does not follow that there is no distinguishing between them. The term natural born citizen exists because not all native born persons are born of American citizens, although before the illegal alien invasion there were very few exceptions.
By principle, natural born citizenship only requires birth to US citizens, but by common description at the time of the founding of the republic it also included the element of being born within the country as well, as in; “one born in America to American citizens”. By that description, if John McCain was not born on a US military base or in the US Embassy, then he would not be eligible to be President. The devil is in the details, and his case is a stark example of how a common language description does not include the element of rare exceptions that are not included in the general description. AN