Recently CBC ran an article on the impending transfer of Omar Khadr to Canada. I am not going to get into the merits of whether he should be transferred here. In my opinion the answer is simple he was born here he is a Canadian even if some don’t like the fact. That said many of those that commented debated his citizenship based on merit and other dubious claims. Basically they believe that unless you behave like ,us act like us, swear allegiance to us alone you aren’t Canadian. Nonsense. The fact that you might share allegiances seems to be a crime and some even objected to the idea of dual citizenship. There came in the problem most people have no idea what dual citizenship is.
In response to a rather arrogant comment where the author noted “Canadians (no hyphen) do not want this” (Khadr’s return) I unfortunately decided to respond. Personally I don’t care if people like it or not, but the laws of many countries allow for dual citizenship. It is not a crime and not really that unpatriotic. It is not a crime to love your heritage, and dual citizenship allows you to visit your relatives in your country of origin without a whole lot of bureaucracy. So although I am not entirely sure that I qualify for dual citizenship via my German father but I do qualify for UK citizenship via my English mother I shot back a notice to the effect that Khadr was Canadian and I am a proud Anglo/German – Canadian.
To this, someone named Lynn@Alberta responded with the following:
“I am german also, born here! You can’t say that your a german-canadian. No such thing, your either german or canadian. Not both. When you became a citzen, you renounced your german citizenship, I know because my husband had too!” (Spelling is as it appeared in the comment – not as a criticism as my spelling sucks as well)
Before I could respond CBC closed the comments (frustrating because I was annoyed). So on the infinitesimal possibility that Ms Lynn@Albert will Google my name and find this Blog here is my come back.
German citizenship is based on jus sanguinis. Jus sanguinis (Latin: right of blood) is a social policy by which citizenship is not determined by place of birth but by having one or both parent who are citizens of the nation. In other words, one usually acquires German citizenship if a parent has “German Blood” irrespective of place of birth. Ms Lynn@Alberta contrary to your belief, you are a German-Canadian like it or not.. Your claim that “You can’t say that your a german-canadian. No such thing, your either german or canadian. Not both.” is WRONG.
You’re free to go renounce your German Citizenship if you like but I’m not sure Germany would care and you would lose a lot of really cool benifits of dual nationality. But if your German heritage means little to you and you like standing in lines at airports, applying for work visas (and paying for them) and never need embassy support in a nation where there is no Canadian Embassy fine go ahead. The only reason one might want to renounce your dual citizenship is if you become a member of Parliament which I totally agree with but somehow I suspect you aren’t about to do that.