Tuesday, May 6, 2008

RIP Mildred Loving

From Pharyngula:

"Loving was the woman who, with her husband, was tried in the 1960s for the crime of interracial marriage; their victory before the Supreme Court led to the striking down of laws banning racially mixed marriages across the country. Here's part of her account:

Not long after our wedding, we were awakened in the middle of the night in our own bedroom by deputy sheriffs and actually arrested for the "crime" of marrying the wrong kind of person. Our marriage certificate was hanging on the wall above the bed. The state prosecuted Richard and me, and after we were found guilty, the judge declared: "Almighty God created the races white, black, yellow, malay and red, and he placed them on separate continents. And but for the interference with his arrangement there would be no cause for such marriages. The fact that he separated the races shows that he did not intend for the races to mix." He sentenced us to a year in prison, but offered to suspend the sentence if we left our home in Virginia for 25 years exile."

You know, I had started to buy into the whole argument that gay marriage is a state issue, but if history, human rights, and common decency mean anything, then this issue should have already been resolved by the Supreme Court.


SuiginChou said...

Stories like this remind me of something my parents keep reminding me: "Ryan, you'd be surprised just how many Americans don't approve of mixed marriages today." As the child of a mixed marriage, I obviously perceive it as celebratory and acceptable; and growing up in America where we are surrounded by half-Chinese, half-Hispanics, and the entire half-African race of African Americans, I guess it's easy for me to forget that it's not only Purdue's East Asians who stick to their own kind, but (sadly) a great chunk of the white population, too.