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The Sustainers, Citizens of the United States 
​By William T. Mayton
​Published January 2017
          In 1776 we knew we were no longer subjects of the British Crown –but then who were we.  The word we created was “citizen”.  In 1776 we used it for the first time in a public document, the Declaration of Independence.  Citizen was then used ten times in the new Constitution but it provided no definition.  For instance, in 2008 Sen. John McCain was the Republican nominee for President.  But the 1787 Constitution, by a part in effect today, implied that McCain could not be President.  He had been born in Panama and by being born abroad could not be President.  My book, though, contends he could be, but then he lost the race. 
          As said the 1787 Constitution did not define the citizen but still we got by.  Excepting one egregious fault:  African Americans were not and could not be made citizens.  Consequently we had the Civil War and then enacted the Fourteenth Amendment that includes African Americans. The Amendment provides, “All persons born . . . in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States”.  It sets two conditions.  First, a person must be born in the United States; second, a person must be “subject to the jurisdiction” of this country. In debate a point made was that persons born to parents here temporary are not born as citizen.  Parent and child must be wholly “subject to the jurisdiction” and a transient presence is not that.  Our last decisions on birthright citizenship were in the 1890’s, for legalimmigrants living here lawfully and peaceably.  In both cases the courts found that the parents were “subject to the jurisdiction” and their children gained birthright citizenship.
           Apart from the courts, the institution that does have power, of who is a citizen, is Congress.  One power is by the Fourteenth Amendment, the other is by Congress’ power over naturalization.  By Sec. 5 of the Amendment Congress can make rules that clarify the Amendment.  Congress has never used that power for citizenship.  Under naturalization Congress may provide a path to illegal immigrants, or to their children. For them Congress can lay down a path at the end of which they are naturalized.  As to the adults, all have broken immigration law, some are criminals, some wrongfully take government benefits, and they do not serve in the armed forces.  For them the path, as there is one, belongs to Congress.  
           From 1776, from Jamestown and Plymouth Rock, to the present time, The Sustainers presents the history, policy, and law of becoming a citizen and what should now be done.

Table of Contents
Prologue   “Seventeen Hundred Levelers with Firearms”              
Chapter I   Introduction
Chapter II   Democracy Turns Up in North America
A.  At Athens:  Living Well
B.  The Res Publica and the Civic Humanists
C.  Plymouth and Hobbes
D.  At Plymouth
E.  At Jamestown
F. Crevecoeur’s Pot
Chapter III   Terms of the Debate
A.  Jus Sanguines
B.  Jus Soli
C.  Consent, Tacit Consent, and Fairness
Chapter IV  Birthright Citizenship under the Original Constitution 
A. Yet, a Fundamental Law
B.  An Alleged Common Law
D.  Congress and the Act of 1790
E. Antebellum Case Law
Chapter V  Birthright Citizenship under the Fourteenth Amendment
A. “Rights of Citizens”: The Civil Rights Act of 1866 
B.  The Amendment’s Citizenship Clause
1.  The Standard: “Subject to the Jurisdiction”
2.  Neither a Synecdoche nor a Circumlocution
3.  Regarding Calvin’s Case
 4.  Immigrants and Aliens
Chapter VI  The Amendment Applied
A. Transient Connections
B.  Native Americans
C.  Immigrants
Chapter VII  Birthright Citizenship and the Civic Minimum
A.  Fairness as Reciprocity
B.  Strong Altruism
C.  And Strong Reciprocity     
Chapter VIII  The Undocumented and the Constitutional Standard
Chapter IX  Congressional Power
A.  Section Five
B.  Naturalization
About the Author
William T. Mayton taught constitutional and administrative law at Emory Law as the Simmons Professor of Law.   Before law school he was a Navy pilot with service in Vietnam.  Afterwards he studied law at Columbia University, practiced law in Washington, DC and Palo Alto, California, served as assistant counsel to the United States Senate Select Committee (the Watergate Committee) and after that went to Emory.  He is the author of numerous articles on constitutional, free speech, and administrative law and has a textbook on Administrative Law currently in its 3rd edition (West Academic).