To me, the issue is not about choosing one country over another or having a piece of paper defining who I am, it is about taking our opportunities for granted.That is what Dual Citizenship is for me- an opportunity. This simple idea that we can help support the Philippines by being their voice here in the America and by boosting more opportunities for stronger relationships between my two countries is why I care so much about applying for Dual Citizenship and encouraging others to also ‘Report Your Birth’.
After hearing my mom say that there was a possibility that I would not be eligible, I had a certain lost feeling thinking I was not even given the opportunity before I could even apply.
I didn’t want others to lose this chance to vote, to own land, to travel, and most importantly for me- a chance for me to extend these opportunities to my future children because if I do not report my birth before I have children- they will not be eligible when they are born.
The Philippines and the United States have always had a symbiotic relationship that focuses democracy.
For true democracy, everyone needs a voice.
I am getting my dual-citizenship because I believe in a democracy that is participatory and truly representative of a democracy that respects every vote and every individual.
When creating a corporation in the Philippines you have to have 5 incorporators. 60% of the incorporators must be Filipino Citizens. It was key having my Dual Citizenship for this purpose. And while Foreigners are allowed to own condos, you have to be a Filipino Citizen to own land. We recently purchased land in Cebu for my parents retirement. Again, being a DC allowed me be on the title.
I want to be a dual citizen because it will allow me to become more civically engaged in the Philippines from here in the United States. While I permanently reside in the United States, I have every interest to invest in the Philippines. I would not have to worry about renewing a visa in order to stay in the Philippines for a lengthy period of time.
The ability to vote is a dual citizen's way of having his or her voice heard.
Anyone can follow how elections progress but the right to vote provides an individual a say in future plans of the Philippines. A candidate can win by a few votes in tight elections. Encouraging others to vote promotes patriotism and the need to learn about all candidates in order to be an informed voter.
I'm a dual citizen by birth since my mother was a Filipino citizen at the time I was born. However, I never knew about reporting my birth to the consulate until I was aware of the dual-citizenship initiative. I read up on the Chicago Consulate's website and asked for more information about my situation. I just have to submit a "report of birth" and will be recognized as a Filipino citizen, allowing me to be fully recognized as a dual citizen.
I'm doing this so that I can have the benefits of traveling to different countries with no visa and to stay in the Philippines for a longer length of time.
Being a first generation immigrant, it is easy for me to answer the question. It would simply be because I have a lot of vested interest (i own property there, I want to start a business there) as well as personal ties (most of my family is still there, i want my future kids to study there) with my home country. That just goes to show how varied our view points are among all FilAms. But we are all united by the fact that we are all Filipinos as well as Americans and that is a powerful thing.
My hope is that we can help strengthen/sustain this group of DCs and --- as we discover what is important for them, define how this group can steer/resolve issues/challenges towards our advantage.
I am 100% with this initiative on our desire to strengthen our relationship with our home country and encourage others to do the same in the many different ways we can.<< Back to Stories