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Letters: Who gets to be a citizen?

August 21, 2012

Re "No 14th Amendment asterisk," Editorial, Aug. 17

Leave it to the Times to understand the 14th Amendment's "subject to the jurisdiction thereof" citizenship clause as meaning anything other than that at least one of the parents must be a citizen of, or at least legally residing in, the United States.

In United States vs. Wong Kim Ark, the Supreme Court decision in 1898 you refer to, Wong was the son of Chinese immigrants legally living in this country at the time of his birth, not of illegal immigrants. There can be no doubt that framers of the 14th Amendment, ratified in 1868, intended that birthright citizenship be given only to children whose parents had no allegiance to a different country.

Randle C. Sink

Huntington Beach

After The Times published a front-page series about global overpopulation, the paper's editorial board continues to support immigration-friendly policies.

I wonder how overcrowded, bankrupt and stripped of natural resources California must become before The Times recognizes that overpopulation is a problem not only for countries like China and India. Overpopulation also imperils the nation whose population has exploded to become the third highest on Earth.

Kenneth Pasternack

Santa Barbara


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