Why the Oath of Renunciation is Not the Opposite of the Oath of Allegiance

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The Oath of Renunciation, as set forth in from DS Form 4080, provides as follows:

  • I desire and hereby make a formal renunciation of my U.S. nationality, as provided by section 349(a)(5) of the Immigration Oath Renunciationand Nationality Act of 1952, as amended, and pursuant thereto, I hereby absolutely and entirely renounce my United States nationality together with all rights and privileges and all duties and allegiance and fidelity thereunto pertaining. I make this renunciation intentionally, voluntarily, and of my own free will, free of any duress or undue influence. 

More than 1,000 USCs took this oath, whose names were published by the Internal Revenue Service for the 1st quarter of 2014.  See, The List is Out – and Its 1,001 Former U.S. Citizens for the 1st Quarter 2014

In stark contrast, the Oath of Allegiance for those who become naturalized U.S. citizens provides as follows:

  • I hereby declare, on oath, that I absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty of whom or which I have heretofore been a subject or citizen; that I will support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I will bear arms on behalf of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform noncombatant service in the Armed Forces of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform work of national importance under civilian direction when required by the law; and that I take this obligation freely without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; so help me God.

What are some of the differences between the two oaths?  Curiously, God is only invoked in one of the cases.

  1. God’s help is requested for those entering the U.S.
  2. No where is God entreated for those leaving the U.S.

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