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What is birthright citizenship?

For many people in Kentucky, being a U.S. citizen is an important part of who they are. There are also many people who want to become a citizen. For some, the process of reaching that goal may be fairly easy if they can claim birthright citizenship, which the American Immigration Council explains is automatic citizenship for anyone born within the United States regardless of where the parents live or their citizenship status.

Essentially, it means that if your parents were citizens of another country visiting the United States when you were born, you are automatically a U.S. citizen because you have a U.S. birth certificate. This seems obvious because that is how most people become citizens of this country.

This type of citizenship comes from the Fourteenth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. This amendment ensures everyone born in this country is a citizen of this country upon birth. It is important to note that the right does not extend to parents. Looking back at the example of your birth, you would be a citizen, but your parents would not be.

Birthright citizenship is a right. If you think about how you prove your citizenship in situations where you must do so, your birth certificate is a major document used to do so. Without this type of citizenship, it would be tough for anyone to prove they are a U.S. citizen. However, there are moves to abolish it, allowing citizenship to only those born here whose parents or at least one parent is a U.S. citizen. This information is for educational use only. It is not legal advice.

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