Over the past years, the U.S. has been accused of denying passports to children who were delivered by midwives rather than in a registered hospital. And under the current U.S. administration, this policy has only been strengthened. But unlike what some people like to believe, withholding passports of children delivered by midwives is an essential security policy that America has to follow.
Declining passports to children
South Texas has been one of the most affected regions in this incident, largely due to its shared border with Mexico through which most of the illegals immigrate into America. The government found that many midwives had issued fraudulent birth certificates to babies who were born in Mexico.
Because of such activities, the previous U.S. administrations had set up a policy to deny passports to children who were delivered by midwives in the Texas region. However, these midwives had also delivered several thousands of children who were genuinely born in the U.S.
But since it is impossible to ascertain which passport applicant is genuine, the administration has been very reluctant in approving them. This is because any approval of passports of midwife deliveries can trigger a potential deluge of immigrants seeking to give birth to their babies in the U.S. so that the children could get a passport.
The Washington Post quotes the U.S. State Department as saying that passport applicants “who have birth certificates filed by a midwife or other birth attendant suspected of having engaged in fraudulent activities, as well as applicants who have both the U.S. and foreign birth certificate, are asked to provide additional documentation establishing they were born in the United States. Individuals who are unable to demonstrate that they were born in the United States are denied issuance of a passport.”
Having a child in America is almost a guarantee of a better life for the kid if the parents are from an impoverished nation. And almost all the immigrants who risk crossing the border to the U.S. know this.
“I wanted to give my child an American passport… We believe when we come down there to have our babies, they are sure of a better future,” VOA News quotes a Nigerian woman who had illegally immigrated to the U.S. to give birth to her baby.
According to the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS), almost 36,000 women enter the U.S. and give birth to children every year. Most of them come from countries like China, Nigeria, Mexico, Taiwan, and Turkey. The moment the child is born, it automatically gains U.S. citizenship as per the 14th Amendment.
What this means is that the mother can take the child back to the home country and once they grow up, the child can come back to the U.S. as a natural citizen and start benefiting from the opportunities offered by being a U.S. citizen. This includes things like access to government aid, free public education, scholarships, government positions, and so on. And since the child has a U.S. passport, they can also sponsor a green card for their relatives.
Many Americans were rightfully angered at the misuse of the 14th amendment and wanted to prevent its manipulation. This is what made the government deny passports to children born to midwives. And this is why the current administration is keen on strengthening such policies so that no outsider can claim benefits reserved for American citizens.