December 4, 2013
To Be or Not to Be an American
Within decades, the number of immigrants to the United States is constantly increasing. One of the huge factors of causing this phenomenon is the congressional debate on immigration legislation and the significant media coverage of the immigration debate. It increases immigrants' concern about the strongly opposition of the immigration debate, which also makes them more susceptible to be convinced by the community groups which are persuading foreigners to apply for citizenship. In addition, some experts believe that the continuous rising of immigration, naturalization, and other service fees in recent also contributed the immigrant to apply for naturalization in order to avoid the further increase of fees. Bharati Mukherjee said that "have we the right to demand, and to expect, that we be loved." People may choose wherever they want to live in, and most immigrants choose to become an American citizen based on the benefits they saw; however, immigrants should take look at the disadvantages behind this and think about what is the best way for them.
The advantages of becoming an American citizen can be broadly divided into ten reasons: 1. Right to vote in elections for public officials. 2. Right to run for elected office. 3. Visa-free. 4. No deportation when committing to a crime. 5. Retired U.S. citizen in a foreign country applies comprehensive social security welfare, but the resident card holders can only enjoy half of the benefits. 6. Right to apply for federal employment requiring U.S. citizenship. 7. Citizens can apply for their relatives according to the immigration law to become permanent residents of the U.S.A., no restrictions on the number, and the waiting time should be much shorter. 8. Biological children or the adoptive ones under the age of 18 automatically become U.S. citizens, if the child was born outside the United States under age of 18 and remain singled, when the parents are at the time of naturalization, the child can be automatically naturalized. 9. American citizen gains more financial and tax incentives, and often easier to apply for loans. 10. No expiration date of being an American citizen as compare to the 10-year renewal of a green card.
On the other hand, the downside of becoming an American citizen, or the responsibilities and obligations are: 1. Have to support and defend the Constitution 2. Stay informed of the issues affecting your community. 3. Participate in the democratic process 4. Respect and obey federal, state, and local laws. 5. Respect the rights, beliefs, and opinions of others 6. Participate in your local community. 7. Pay Income and other taxes on time honestly, to federal, state, and local authorities. 8. Serve on a jury when called upon. 9. Defend the country if the need should arise. "Pay income and other taxes". For the overseas migrants, especially for businessmen, the greatest impact is "to pay income and other taxes." U.S. citizens who working overseas have to pay the taxes annually to the U.S. government, this means the oversea migrants must have a work that may satisfied in two equal tax, and all the overseas assets also needs to be reported and pay tax according the law. It affects citizens working abroad greatly, which makes many people decided to give up their overseas citizenship.
In my personal example, I am an American immigrant who is facing the perplexity of