On Wednesday, Donald Trump once again floated the idea of ending the constitutionally-protected practice known as “birthright citizenship” by issuing an executive order to that effect.
Trump says he’s “very seriously” looking at trying to change the Constitution by executive order.
“We’re looking at that very seriously — birthright citizenship. Where you have a baby on our land … ‘congratulations the baby is now a US citizen’ … it’s, frankly, ridiculous.” pic.twitter.com/5IBNOcMXE9
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) August 21, 2019
In practical terms, birthright citizenship is the fact that you become an American citizen by being born in the United States of America. It’s the reason America gets to claim, say, Bruce Lee as one of our own. He was born in the United States to non-citizen parents who just happened to be touring San Francisco with the Chinese Opera Company, but by virtue of being in America at the time, Bruce was able to return to America in later years without even needing naturalization.
Trump doesn’t think of the brown skin of a Bruce Lee when he proposes this, however. He’s thinking of the brown skin to the south of the United States, which he has made clear since the very beginning of even his presidential campaign he wants to eliminate from this country.
But not only is it impossible for him to change the Constitution with an executive order, but it would also actually result in some pretty hilarious deportations if it were retroactive: Florida Senator Marco Rubio, gone. Former Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal, gone. Former New Mexico Senator Pete Domenici, gone. Colin Powell? Renee Zellweger? If Trump made the ban retroactive, they’d be banished to Jamaica and Norway, respectively.
It’s not the first time Trump has proferred the white nationalist dream of ending birthright citizenship, nor, we are certain, will it be the last. With this administration taking advice from immigration hardliners who want to limit even LEGAL inflow of brown folks, we don’t see him slowing down soon.
Featured image via screen capture
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