This Controversial Tourism Birth ‘Trend’ Is Getting Serious Backlash: WATCH
A controversial tourism "trend" is taking over TikTok, with many people responding with harsh criticism.
An online influencer on TikTok drew backlash after uploading a video about her decision to have a baby in a country other than her home country.
In a since-deleted viral video, the influencer sings the praises of "birth tourism."
"This provides your child with a second citizenship at birth, even if you as the parent are not a resident of that country. As is the case in many countries, parents also gain permanent residency with a pathway to citizenship," she says in the removed video.
"More and more people are leaving the West ... With an additional passport you always have an alternative place to go. You have protection in case anyone tries to restrict your freedom of movement. You can choose which types of systems you want to be a part of," the influencer continues.
What is birth tourism? According to the Cambridge Dictionary, "birthing tourism" is when a person travels "to another country for the purpose of giving birth there," typically to obtain citizenship for their child via a right some countries have called "jus soli." In many cases, giving birth in another country offers a pathway for the parent to pursue citizenship as well.
Her "birth tourism" video isn't the only content the influencer — who moved from Australia to Costa Rica to give birth and "pursue a life of freedom and sovereignty and collect an extra passport for my child" — has received criticism for.
In another video, she shared some of her controversial parenting choices, including co-sleeping with her infant, not vaccinating her child and giving birth outside of the hospital system — actions many consider dangerous.
"Crazy to be in a jungle and not have any vaccines," one viewer commented, while another weighed in, "Amazing, when white and rich having your child on foreign soil is classy. Let a poor person try that."
In another video, she claimed she is "collecting multiple passports" so she can become a "global citizen" and live wherever she believes she has the most "personal freedom."
"In times of uncertainty, power comes from having options," the TikTok content creator said, explaining how giving birth to children in other countries gives both her and her children residence in said countries.
"The privilege is unreal. Don’t do this if you don’t believe in vaccinations. Spreading diseases like a real colonizer. No care for the local people," one viewer commented on that video.
The influencer's support for "birth tourism" in particular has been slammed on TikTok, with many people calling out self-proclaimed "birth tourists" for tapping into white privilege to do something people of color are typically criticized or demonized for.
One TikTok user said that "the irony is insane" considering he's been called an "anchor baby."
Another TikTok user pointed out the double standard by pondering, "What's trashy if you're poor, but classy if you're rich?"
"Birth tourism? Y’all what come up with new names just so that there's a distinction between what you do and what you call [people] of the global majority do. Even though it's the same exact thing. Y’all just don’t want the negative connotations and experiences that come with it (ex: expats vs. immigrant, birth tourism vs. anchor baby)," the user wrote.
Other users called out the hypocrisy of how children of immigrants are called the derogatory term "anchor baby," though not when born to a typically white "expat" or "digital nomad."
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Gallery Credit: Natasha Reda