Instructions for reading this post

Before reading any further, please carefully follow these instructions. They will prevent injury when you read this post.

Step 1. Get a large handkerchief or scarf.
Step 2. Take one end of the handkerchief each hand.
Step 3. Place the center of the handkerchief under your jaw.
Step 4. Tie the ends of the handkerchief on top of your head so that you can’t open your mouth (see the illustration on the right).
Step 5. Not that tight. This isn’t Michael Hutchence Memorial Day.

Now you’re ready to read this post.

After my previous post about ReaLAMErican Russell Pearce, I allowed curiosity to overcome my better judgement and actually read the emails in question. It turns out the original report on the emails is inaccurate. Pearce doesn’t attack the 14th Am. Dear me no. He wants to get back to the original intent, as he sees it. We know what that means.

Fortunately, I put on my bio-hazard suit before wading in to the cess pool. Here’s Sen. Pearce in his own words:

“Thank you and you are right we must stay vigilant on these and other issues. We must take back America. I also intend to push for an Arizona bill that would refuse to accept or issue a birth certificate that recognizes citizenship to those born to illegal aliens, unless one parent is a citizen.

The Citizenship Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment stats [sic] that U.S. citizens are “all persons born or naturalized in the United states and [subject to the] jurisdiction thereof.”

You can read the clause in full here, and see that what he wants to do is expressly prohibited by the 14th Am.

Are you sure your handkerchiefs are tight enough? He continues:

“…American Indians, despite the obvious location of their birth, did not receive U.S. citizenship until it was conferred by congressional acts in … long after ratification of the Fourteenth Amendment. The extensive litigation concerning American Indians proves that the consent of both the government and the individual is what controls citizenship, rather than place of birth.”

Now … Well, why do you think I told you to tie a handkerchief around your head? Look, your chin couldn’t have dropped that far before it smacked into your keyboard. Put some ice on it.

Anyway. Some people would be a bit skittish about using a long history of displacement and genocide to support an argument. But not our friend Russ. Even though he is a senator in a state that has 21 recognized tribes, he plows right on. He refers to Elk v. Wilkins – a 1884 Supreme Court Case that found Native Americans were not citizens.

He passes along an article by something called P.A. Madison, which goes on at great length about the intent of the 14th Am., citing at one point the words of Sen. Lyman Trumbull (Illinois 1855-1873):

“Can you sue a Navajo Indian in court? Are the in any sense subject to the complete jurisdiction of the United States? By no means.”

It goes on and it doesn’t get any better and at no time does Russ say: Ha, ha just kidding! Because he’s a Republican and he’s deadly serious.

And oddly enough, through out all this wanking about the 14th Am and the true meaning of citizenship, no one ever mentions United States v. Wong Kim Ark, a 1898 Supreme Court case that held a child who is born in the U.S. to non-U.S. citizens is,   (guess what!) a U.S. citizen.

I wonder why that is.

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