A Critical Analysis of Dual Citizenship

Topics: Nationality law, Nation, Attachment theory Pages: 9 (2612 words) Published: July 29, 2013
A Critical Analysis of Dual Citizenship:
Why individuals should not hold citizenship in more than one country at the same time.

Political Science 100
2012

Questions answered: 1
Word Count: 2217
While examining the concept of citizenship, it has a close link with nationality; nationality is defined as belonging in a group of individuals sharing the same ethnicity, language, culture and identity. Citizenship is often granted through marriage, place of birth or is passed down from parents (Renhson, 2001). Governments provide its citizens with protection, rights, freedom, and many other benefits. Most countries require their citizens to follow strict laws such as taxation and military services. With democracy as the ideal political structure, many governments are allowing dual/multiple citizenships (citizenship of more than one country) to its citizens. Dual/multiple citizenship may seem to be a big step towards a country’s democracy and it may also seem beneficial to individuals, however, there are also underlying disadvantages regarding to dual citizenship. This essay will address the concept of citizenship; what are the requirements of being a citizen, following with limitations and disadvantages of dual/multiple citizenship, and lastly some counterarguments and rebuttals to the ideology that individuals should only hold citizenship to more than one country at the same time.

Concept of Citizenship

The value of citizenship is very firm and concise. It defines individuals within their nationality, it give citizens political rights, and responsibilities. Governments offer protection and liberty to its citizens; also citizens have a great emotional and psychological attachment to their country (Renhson, 2001). While citizenship and nationality intertwine, one’s nationality may be defined by one’s race, culture, language, belief, and religion. In order to be part of a nation, one needs to acknowledge many of the political ideologies and being able to take part in a country’s political belief. Citizenship offer similar system as nationality, the citizenship individual hold onto will allow others to acknowledge their membership of a particular nation (MacLean and Wood, 2010, p. 18). Because the concept of citizenship is both very nation and political specific, to guarantee an emotional and psychological attachment, many countries do not allow its citizens to hold dual/multiple citizenship, thus, if an individual wants to gain citizenship of another nation, sacrifices such as giving up their current citizenship must be made in order to be recognized as citizen in the additional country.

Limitations and disadvantages

According to Renhson (2001) in most countries, there are a number of ways to gain citizenship. A person can attain citizenship that’s passed down from either one of the parents (jus sanguinis). A child born within a country is automatically granted citizenship (jus soli). A person immigrates to another country, become assimilated by that country then choose to apply for citizenship without having to give up their previous citizenship status (an example of duel citizenship). Another example would be similar to the one mentioned above however, individuals have to discard their former citizenship; it is often the case for countries disallowing dual citizenship. With the increasing number of countries allowing for dual/multiple citizenship, there are number of conflicts that can arise with holding citizenship to more than one country, factors such as conflict of responsibilities, conflict of military services and conflict of law abiding will all be problematic to individuals. As mentioned the definition of citizenship contains a big part of emotional and psychological attachment with a certain country, however, it is nearly impossible to have equal attachment for two countries, or sometimes more than two countries.

Emotional and psychological attachment

In order to obtain dual/multiple...
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