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Anchor Baby

noun; analogy
A child born to a couple who are in the United States illegally, but is nonetheless a U.S. citizen by birth Anchor Baby probably originated by analogy to a ship’s anchor, which secures the ship. The term refers to a baby born to illegal immigrants residing within the United States. These people do not have the legal rights of an American citizen, but any child born to them gains those rights automatically by becoming a citizen. In the same way that a ship’s anchor holds it in place, the child becomes an “anchor” for himself and for his parents by being eligible for everything that the parents are not, and by growing up amidst American culture.
 
These so-called 'anchor babies' get full rights upon birth.
Etymology : From the comparison of a child to a ship’s anchor, because he acts as an anchor between his (foreign) parents and American society. He himself is also figuratively anchored to this country through U.S. citizenship
Source : A news program about the discussion of American citizenship
Last modified: 10 June 2008