Children born in the United States of America to immigrant parents are commonly referred to as anchor babies. The United States law regarding the identity of anchor babies provides them with legal citizenship rights by birth. As a result, these provisions qualify these children for welfare support, which is a function of the governmental authorities. In addition, they can benefit from other key programs, which are supported by the state and are accessible by all American citizens. The passage of the Immigration and Naturalization Act of 1965 into law allowed anchor babies who had reached twenty one years of age to sponsor another member of their nuclear family to acquire citizenship in the United States of America. This led to an upsurge of illegal immigrants into the United States of America. The official birth statistics retrieved from hospitals serve to reveal impending status of quo. For instance, in Parkland Memorial Hospital located in Texas and the second busiest maternity ward in the United States, 70% of women giving birth are illegal immigrants (Reiner). Incidents like this serve to complicate the issue of immigration and the children born in America. Consequently, this has led to the emergence of significant conflict due to the legal provisions and the resultant moral dilemma.
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In essence, the founders of the United States of America were originally immigrants. The American society is probably one of the most welcoming nations to foreigners than any other nation of the world. Yearly, there are millions of children born who belong to immigrant couples living in America. Most of these immigrant couples do not have legal identity papers, which compromises the existence of these children as they have to leave under strange circumstances. Despite the fact that they have legal rights to live in the United States, the actual numbers of anchor babies is enormous. The bone of contention is that the law does not provide similar provisions for their illegal immigrant parents. Hence, in most cases the immigrant parents end up being deported back to their maiden countries. This leaves the anchor babies with no body to take care of them, which is even worse in cases where the children are very young in age. Due to this, some immigrant parents decide to take their legally American child with them or they leave them with friends and distant relatives.
Historically, these issues have led to the emergence of critical debates regarding the violation of human rights. The universal nature of human rights implies that they can be applied in any national setting. For instance, going by common belief, the right to life is a universal human right; hence, everyone regardless of where they are deserve to enjoy this fundamental right (Shaw, 77). The present bad economy of the United States has been largely blamed on the upsurge of anchor babies. This should not be the case since these children have the legal right to live in the country. Hence, they deserve to be treated equally like other child born to legal American citizens. Moreover, these children have the right to live under the protection of their biological parents. This is because no alternative can substitute the love, care and warmth provided by the biological parents. Therefore, the act of breaking this relationship aptly leads to the generation of feelings of hatred among anchor babies. Even if the deported immigrant parents decide to carry with them their anchor babies, these babies will grow knowing that America denied them their legal rights of citizenship. Therefore, it is important to note that anchor babies have the human right to live in a proper family setting in which the real parents are the ones raising them.
The problem of the illegal immigrants will for a long time remain a controversial topic for the future American generations. The weakness lies in the association of illegal immigrants with the issue of anchor babies. It is common sense that children that are unable to support themselves since they fully depend on their parents. Furthermore, it is an immoral act for one to separate members from a nuclear family. How can a legal provision be termed as an immoral decision? Our moral judgment ought to be logically compatible with our other moral and immoral beliefs (Shaw, 29). There are two scenarios to this situation: first, an anchor baby cannot take care of itself, but has full rights to live in the America; secondly, the immigrant parents do not have the right to live in America, but have the right to raise their children. The law is very clear on this; hence, persons who do not have legal identity papers should not be allowed to live in America. In essence, immigrants who are deported to their maiden countries should be allowed to return following the proper legal channels that will guarantee them access to legal identity.
The subject of illegal immigrants and anchor babies needs to be examined under a clear moral framework. For example, human morals discourage the act of separating an inherent bond between a mother and her son. This is because it results in subjecting the son to an act of abandonment. Using Shaw’s argument to criticize this hypothetical situation, we are able to establish clear boundaries depicting the fundamental differences between what is moral and immoral. Hence, the act of subjecting a child to abandonment is essentially immoral, even though the parents are immigrants.
Finally, anchor baby have the right to live as legal citizens of America, hence, they have full access to all the benefits guaranteed by the individual states. It is a basic human right for a child to live with its parents until it is grown and can take care of itself. Moreover, separating an anchor child from its original parents only breeds a generation full of hatred. In essence, children should be allowed to leave with their parents until they become 21 years of age. This suggests that the act of taking a parent away from his or her child is immoral especially when the child is very young and incapable of nurturing itself. Therefore, there is an urgent need to review the current legal provisions by taking into consideration the impending moral dilemma.