Today we honor the groundbreaking 1967 Supreme Court decision, Loving vs. Virginia, which ended miscegenation, a law making interracial marriage illegal. Mildred Jeter and Richard Loving, an interracial married couple, were denied equal protection under the law, arrested, and forced to leave Virginia simply because they loved each other and got married. Virginia wasn’t always “for lovers.”
Mildred wrote US Attorney General, Robert F. Kennedy for help. He referred her to the ACLU, who recommended attorney Bernard S. Cohen. Who later worked the Loving’s case with attorney Philip H. Hirschkop, eventually the couple’s case was heard by the United States Supreme Court. Learn more at LovingDay.org.
1967 was not that long ago, let’s remember that equality is still being fought for as we celebrate a not so distant historic case. We cannot take for granted Supreme Court rulings that protect equality and freedom as they may easily be taken away.
Evolution on social issues is not to be dismissed with a catch phrase. If we are silent, we will slide backwards instead of progressing forward. We’re not on a slippery slope, we’re in danger of going over a cliff. The lie of white supremacy is the foundation for denying equality. Whether it’s packaged as protecting “racial integrity” or protecting “voter integrity” white supremacy is the foundation. We cannot perpetuate this lie. So, speak up, equality will not magically happen. Mildred and Robert Loving are proof of that.