Is it legal to have an unregistered off-the-grid baby in the USA?

My younger brother was an off-the-grid baby by accident.

He was born in our upstairs bathroom after midnight. My mother had just enough warning to call, "it feels like the baby is ready", and there he was. The first baby in decades to be born within the borders of our small, hospital-less town.

An ambulance arrived minutes later, provided first aid, and wrote up a birth certificate - incorrectly.

When my brother was eight, we moved to England. My parents applied for passports for my family. My brother's application was turned down. We learned that the federal government did not believe that he existed.

The remarkable thing is not that my brother existed off-the-grid, but that he was able to be on-the-grid for years before "the grid" recognized that he was there. He got his shots at the doctorís office. He went to school.

The federal government either never found out, or never cared, until there was paperwork involved. Demonstrating my brother's existence - and citizenship, and right to leave the country - was a huge bureaucratic pain. A truly off-the-grid baby, with no doctors or teachers to swear to his existence, would never have succeeded.

Do you want to raise a baby who faces the drivers-license-less, passport-less hurdles of an undocumented immigrant?