In 1958, Mildred and Richard Loving Killed Virginia’s “Racial Integrity Act”
Shona and I often get “the look” when we hold hands in public – and when the rest of the family is with us we sometimes get “the stare”. That is just reality for a mixed marriage like ours. We know that some folks are more curious or surprised than anything and their stares are not unkindly.
But other people cannot keep the look of disgust from their faces. When its really bad – sometimes we have some fun. Shona will lean over and plant a big long kiss and mischievously say (loud enough to be heard) “I think we should get you right home right now.”
Nothing bothers those kind of bigoted people more than that thought, you know!
Interracial marriages will remain “special” for the foreseeable future, but in the United States it was Mildred Jeter and Richard Loving whose love ended all race-based legal restrictions on marriage. In 1958 they left Virginia for a day and got married in Washington, DC. When they returned home they were charged with violating the Virginia State law against blacks and whites marrying or sleeping together. (Other races did not face such prohibitions in law)
In 1967 the United States Supreme Court decided that Virginia’s law was unconstitutional… and that was the end of that for legal prohibitions against interracial marriage.
Richard Loving died in 1975 in a car accident, and Mildred just passed on last Friday at the age of 68. In an interview last June, Mildred said that she wasn’t trying to change history, she was just a girl who fell in love with a boy.
Shona and I can both relate to that statement.
Wikipedia: Loving v. Virginia