Ultima: I hope you found the blog transcript of my last interview with you to be fair and accurate.
Dee: I suppose I could nitpick the transcript but, yes, basically it reflects my views on the matter.
Ultima: Okay let’s move on to another topic. First, however, let me clear up one other issue. You have been quoted as saying, "I am as gentle as a grandmotherly lamb. I always remain civil and never name call". Somehow that doesn’t seem very truthful to me. Many of your posts (and those of your proxies who post on your blog) literally drip with venom and incivility. That means that any claim to being gentle as a lamb lacks credibility. There are many ways to be uncivil and name call. For example, recently you posted an image of six distinguished United States senators which you inscribed with the following legend, “hydro-head, hate-filled, racist Republicans.” Now if that is not name-calling, I don’t know what is. Had I recorded every similar episode from your long history of rants, incivility, and name-calling, you would be convicted a thousand times over by your own words. There would be such a large volume of those words and their repetition that the conclusion would be undeniable. To give you your dues, you seem to have a schizoid personality which allows you to post some factual news items without much if any spin. Then you turn right around and lose it, returning to your invective and name-calling mode. I can’t explain it any other way than to attribute it to a schizoid personality, unless you are just pretending when you seem reasonable. With those observations out of the way, let’s move on to the 14th Amendment controversy. As long as it is the law of the land, we all have a responsibility to adhere to it and no one to my knowledge has been able to do otherwise.
Dee: I won’t respond to your charge of incivility and name-calling except to point out that you have frequently responded in kind. As far as the 14th Amendment is concerned, you are right; it is a part of the constitution and we all should act accordingly.
Ultima: At some point in the recent past, you seemed to suggest that the Constitution should not be changed but the fact of the matter is that the Constitution has been amended 27 times and there is at least one amendment out there, the Equal Rights Amendment for Women, that has still not received the necessary approval of 3/4ths of the states. There are likely to be more in the future and we are fortunate that the Founding Fathers made a provision for doing so. In recognition of the difficulty in gaining full approval of Constitutional Amendments, the current trend seems to be to rely on a legislative solution that would ultimately have to be reviewed by the Supreme Court.
Dee: I don’t believe that is possible since the Court has already affirmed the meaning of the Amendment in 150 cases. It would therefore be a waste of time for Congress to take such an action.
Ultima: Some may think the 14th Amendment is “elegant in its simplicity” but the number of cases brought to test that simplicity would suggest otherwise. Usually the only way to correct a defective amendment is with another amendment to the U.S Constitution. However, another way the Constitution's meaning is changed is often referred to as "informal amendment." This phrase is a misnomer, because there is no way to informally amend the Constitution, only the formal way. However, the meaning of the Constitution, or the interpretation, can change over time.
Dee: I don’t believe that.
Ultima: There are two main ways that the interpretation of the Constitution changes, and hence its meaning. The first is simply that circumstances can change, like the present circumstances in which, unlike before the 1986 amnesty, 12 million illegal aliens now exist within our borders. One prime example is the extension of the vote. In the times of the Constitutional Convention, the vote was often granted only to moneyed land holders. Over time, this changed and the vote was extended to more and more groups. Finally, the vote was extended to all males, then all persons 21 and older, and then to all persons 18 and older. The informal status quo became law, a part of the Constitution; because that was the direction the culture was headed. Another example is the political process that has evolved in the United States: political parties, and their trappings (such as primaries and conventions) are not mentioned or contemplated in the Constitution, but they are now fundamental to our political system.
Dee: Those two examples don’t quite seem to be the same as the presence of illegal aliens since some number of them, Chinese, Irish, Italian, Mexican and others have always been present in our country.
Ultima: Perhaps not but in the U.S., one of the strongest incentives for border violations is the 14th amendment which grants citizenship to anyone who is born in this country. “It is difficult to imagine a more irrational and self-defeating legal system than one which makes unauthorized entry into this country a criminal offense and simultaneously provides perhaps the greatest possible inducement to illegal entry [birthright citizenship].” Since the current interpretation of the 14th promotes border violations, anyone who is interested in securing the borders needs to help find a way to achieve a more rational interpretation.
Dee: I think the current interpretation has withstood the tests of time and therefore I support it. There are other ways of securing the borders which we discussed in a previous interview.
Ultima: The authors of the 14th Amendment never would have imagined their words would bestow citizenship on the offspring of illegal aliens, tourists, foreign students, visa overstays, and temporary farm workers. If an act of Congress could be brought before the Supreme Court, the majority of the Justices might agree that times have indeed changed sufficiently to warrant a different view of the Amendment, especially in view of the fact that other most developed countries, with the exception of Canada, have already abandoned Jus Soli as the primary determiner of citizenship.
Dee: Do you really think it is likely that the Court would overturn all of those prior precedents?
Ultima: One of the cases often cited as evidence of the meaning of the 14th Amendment is United States v. Wong Kim Ark, 169 U.S. 649 (1898). This was a United States Supreme Court decision that set an important legal precedent about what determines United States citizenship. The legal question presented to Court was:
“[W]hether a child born in the United States, of parents of Chinese descent, who, at the time of his birth, were subjects of the Emperor of China, but who have a permanent domicile and residence in the United States, and are there carrying on business, and are not employed in any diplomatic or official capacity under the Emperor of China, becomes at the time of his birth a citizen of the United States by virtue of the first clause of the Fourteenth Amendment of the Constitution.”
The Court ruled decisively, 6 – 2, in favor of Wong Kim Ark. But, since Ark’s parents were here legally, had a permanent domicile and residence in the U.S., and were carrying on a business, the Court did not address the question of the offspring of illegal aliens and tourists who had no such legal status or domicile.
The minority also argued that "it is not open to reasonable doubt that the words 'subject to the jurisdiction thereof,' in the amendment, were used as synonymous with the words 'and not subject to any foreign power' . . . ." They thus reasoned that the majority opinion exactly contradicted the original intended meaning of the 14th Amendment.
Dee: This is all very interesting but it does not alter the difficulties faced by those who wish to have the Amendment reinterpreted to exclude the children of illegal aliens and tourists.
Ultima: I take it this is another area where you would not be supportive of any change that would improve border security by reducing the incentives for illegal entry.
Working for logical immigation reform based on a stable population, a recognition of the finite nature of our natural resources and the adverse impact of continued growth on our quality of life, standard of living, national interest, character, language, sovereignty and the rule of law. Pushing back and countering the disloyal elements in American society and the anti-American rhetoric of the leftwing illegal alien lobbies. In a debate, when your opponents turn to name calling, it's a good sign you've already won.