— U.S. Citizen Abroad (@USCitizenAbroad) October 23, 2013
If you haven’t seen the movie 12 years a slave I suggest you do so. In particular the last 45 minutes is extremely thought provoking. Incredibly the story takes place about 160 years ago. The good news is that the world as come a long way. That said, it is a reminder that “freedom” is a delicate thing. As Ronald Reagen would say:
The movie takes place before the Civil War and before the 14th Amendment. As you know the “Equal Protection” clause of the 14 amendment was for the purpose of giving Blacks equal citizenship.
To give “equal citizenship” is NOT to define what citizenship is and what it means. The last few years have been extremely difficult for Americans abroad. Many are questioning the meaning of U.S. citizenship. Some view U.S. citizenship as an immense honor and privilege. Some view it as an albatross around their necks. Some go so far as to see U.S. citizenship as a form of slavery. In fact, Petros once argued that the U.S. was now using he 14th amendment to create slaves of anyone born in the U.S. I have long argued that the U.S. considers its citizens to be a form of state property.
In his 2012 State of the Union address President Obama spoke of citizenship:
We are citizens. It’s a word that doesn’t just describe our nationality or legal status. It describes the way we’re made. It describes what we believe. It captures the enduring idea that this country only works when we accept certain obligations to one another and to future generations; that our rights are wrapped up in the rights of others; and that well into our third century as a nation, it remains the task of us all, as citizens of these United States, to be the authors of the next great chapter in our American story.
Do “Homelanders” have obligations to Americans abroad?
I strongly recommend that you see this movie! I look forward to the comments of those who have seen it.