Toronto Globe & Mail editorial on the rights of dual citizens:
“You Can’t be Partly Canadian”
The Globe recognizes the needs and rights of dual citizens. I have responded with a posted comment, emphasizing the needs of dual citizens to be protected from their country of origin while within Canada, especially from FATCA and related US initiatives.
For now, the Department of Foreign Affairs seems uninterested in pursuing the suggestion of one of its senior bureaucrats: to scale back consular services for some Canadians with dual citizenship, who live abroad for long periods of time.
For Mohamed Fahmy, a Canadian journalist who has been held for more than two weeks in one of Egypt’s most notorious prisons, that’s especially welcome news.
If Ottawa were to change the rules of consular assistance – along the lines of what has been floated — Mr. Fahmy couldn’t count on Canada’s help to free him from detention in Egypt’s Tora prison. He has been held there, without charge, since Dec. 29, after authorities accused him of filming interviews with members of the now banned Muslim Brotherhood…
Canadians like Mr. Fahmy should get the consular assistance they need. There’s no such thing as a second-class Canadian citizen.
Mr. Fahmy, according to the article, is a dual citizen with both Canada and Egypt. That means that he is not under the protection of Canada while in Egypt. Unfortunately being a dual citizen doesn’t mean that one is fully Canadian and fully Egyptian–dual citizenship means that one is no longer under the protection of the one country when one steps foot into one’s other country. Unfortunately, too few people understand this, and certainly not the editorial at the Globe and Mail.
What we require is that the governments of our various nations protect those who are resident in their non-US nation. That means that the US may not provide protection for us. Which means, of course, that our nations in which we reside must protect us from the US tax overreach. This is the covenant that we have with our governments and when they fail to do that, they lose all legitimacy or rather, they indicate that they have lost their control over the affairs of the countries that they govern.
Here’s the link for those who were looking for it.
The Boot-Strap Expat
AFAICT, that would be the “Master Nationality Rule”. See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Master_Nationality_Rule.
As Petros says, dual Canada-US citizens who are resident in Canada should really expect, and demand, to be treated as Canadians, and only Canadians, by the government of Canada.
@tdott, Good to be able to assign a name to something. Thanks.
I would indicate that in with the doctrine of Dominant Nationality, the Master Nationality rule has been challenged effectively in international courts. This means that if you are of Dominant nationality of one state, the lesser state may not be able to make claims against you, even if you step into that state. But it is hard to make it stick, since once you enter that country, you are at the mercy of the authorities there.
I think the key point we need to make about this editorial is there can be no such thing as a second-class Canadian as far as the Government of Canada is concerned and as far as what happens on our sovereign soil.
I have sent the following to my MP, as well as Baird, Flaherty, and the party leaders:
I am writing to call your attention to an excellent editorial by today’s Globe and Mail.
There is no such thing as second-class citizenship in Canada. The Charter of Rights and Freedoms applies to ALL Canadians, no matter their national or ethnic origin. Also no matter whether they have dual or multiple citizenships with other countries.
I insist that these principles apply not only to consular services from the Government of Canada, but that they apply equally in the case of Canadians’ rights to privacy, banking rights, and protection from outright robbery by the US IRS as proposed by them under FATCA, their Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act.
The Government of Canada absolutely must NEVER sign any international treaty or agreement which would create any sort of second-class citizenship and legal protection in Canada. Nor should it ever permit any Canadian financial institution to treat Canadian citizens differently from each other, on the basis of any of the proscribed categories listed in Section 15 of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, specifically including national and ethnic origin and dual or multiple citizenship, as defined by no matter whom.
I and other Canadians will hold this government, and all political parties, strictly accountable to these principles, in all federal elections.
I, and I am sure many others visiting this website, have made this “no second-class citizenship” point before, many times, to our politicians. But the point bears repeated hammering into their sometimes thick skulls, and this editorial provides yet another excellent opportunity for doing so.
Thanks for calling this to our attention, Northern Shrike.
Bravo and thanks once again for another excellent missive to our Canadian government representatives. I put a comment on the G&M article. I hope it’s still there.
@Schubert, I think that we need to challenge the government only to protect dual citizens who are resident in Canada. To do otherwise would violate international law. But we need to invoke international law (see my post) in order to get the US off our backs. I’m sorry for a dual citizen who gets arrested or caught up in the political problems of their second nationality. But unfortunately, these are the international rules. A nation does well to protect those who are within the border and to extend diplomatic efforts to those citizens who find themselves in trouble in other countries. But if they are citizens of that country too, it is an over extension to try to offer them protection.
This is exactly why it is necessary to renounce or relinquish US citizenship–if you later visit the US, you are under Canadian protection and it becomes a diplomatic incident when the US detains or arrests you.
“Let me see your papers!”
Has anyone else recognized or contemplated the ridiculousness of this entire debate?
In most of the Constitutions of the Western and democratic nations is some recognition of basic Human Rights, one of which is ownership of one’s person and the right to travel freely regardless of the accidental (to the individual) location of one’s birth. Every argument pro and con regarding these issues begin with the premise that “Fictional” entities and imaginary lines on the ground have the authority to undermine or negate our Natural Rights as Individual Human Beings.
What is citizenship? In the broadest sense it is a nation’s claim of ownership of individuals. It’s not a Passport, it’s a “Slave Card,” to use Jeff Berwick’s term, and it can be denied or revoked by bureaucrats of the fictional entity known as the government or state, which is subject to change at any time with or without the approval of the tax-cows that feed these fictional entities.
How is citizenship determined? Here’s my example:
– I was born in the States to Canadian parents, I’m thereby a US citizen against my will, and can establish Canadian citizenship based upon my parents’.
– My paternal grandfather was a Pole who settled in Canada, thereby granting me the ability to establish Polish citizenship based on my heritage.
– My maternal grandfather was 100% Ojibwe of the First Nations, which means I could establish quasi-citizenship of the First Nations of North America.
– My maternal grandmother was of Irish and French Canadian heritage, which allows me to establish Irish citizenship.
– My paternal grandmother was born in Canada to Ukrainian parents. I don’t believe Ukraine offers citizenship based on heritage.
With so many options of citizenship open to this single individual the question arises, “how does citizenship in any of these fictional entities benefit me?” For the most part they don’t. They merely allow non-real or artificial entities to claim ownership and authority over me.
While we fight over where to place the deck chairs on our personal Titanic, the smart folks are already rowing for safety in the lifeboats that for the time being are still available. This will change. FATCA is just one of many Capital Controls being brought to bare against tax-cows in the foundering nations of the west. In Spain it’s almost impossible to move YOUR money out of the country, and the States have already begun limiting the ability of tax-slaves, I mean citizens from moving their assets out of the country.
The ships of the so-called developed west are sinking and wanting to take all of us with them. Perhaps it’s time we recognized the brilliance of our ancestors to took ourselves out of harm’s way.
The Boot-Strap Expat
Here’s a video that sums up the Illusions we all deal with.
The Boot-Strap Expat