I am a Mexican citizen, and also a citizen of Canada. The basic rule of thumb states that while I am in Mexico, I am considered Mexican, and only Mexican. In Canada, the reverse is true – I am only Canadian. Anywhere else in the world I can elect to use the nationality I wish to.
I thought long and hard before becoming a naturalized citizen of Mexico. Citizenship is a privilege I did not want to take lightly. I finally came to the conclusion that I had earned the right. At the time I took out the naturalization, I had lived in Merida for nearly 30 years. I had a Mexican-born husband and two Mexican-born children. I felt part of the community and culture. I spoke Spanish so I could communicate fully and openly. In short, I was already a citizen in every way but by name.
As a Mexican citizen I would have many advantages:
- · I could vote
- · I could freely express my political opinions
- · I could own property in my own name (no bank trust needed)
- I could change address or jobs without having to inform the National Institute of Immigration (INM)
- I could hold a Mexican passport
Certain political positions and jobs require that one be a natural born citizen, just as is the case in many other countries
Natural born Mexicans cannot be forced to give up their nationality but naturalized Mexicans can lose their status for a variety of reasons including the application for a third nationality. For example, I am eligible for Dutch citizenship (and EU passport) but if I elect to pursue this, I would lose my Mexican citizenship.
A good webpage to visit for more information on becoming a naturalized citizen is: www.sre.gob.mx
On the day I received my official naturalization papers, our friends Carlos and Susana had a celebratory dinner. She decorated in green, white and red and served chiles en nogada. Carlos played his Pepe Aguiler CDs and we drank tequila… lots of tequila!