Monday, June 18, 2007

Mildred Loving, 40 Years Later

Andrew Sulliavn has a post concerning a public statement made by Mildred Loving, one of the plaintiffs in the U. S. Supreme Court case decided 40 years ago. What is so remarkable is what she reports the Virginia judge said as he conviced her and her husband who had been legally married in another jurisdiction. It shows that little has changed in the mind set of the Christianists. Here in Virginia, the same hate of those who are differnent is sadly alive and well. Here are some highlights Mildred Loving's statement:

We didn’t get married in Washington because we wanted to marry there. We did it there because the government wouldn’t allow us to marry back home in Virginia where we grew up, where we met, where we fell in love, and where we wanted to be together and build our family. You see, I am a woman of color and Richard was white, and at that time people believed it was okay to keep us from marryingbecause of their ideas of who should marry whom.

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.

I believe all Americans, no matter their race, no matter their sex, no matter their sexual orientation, should have that same freedom to marry. Government has no business imposing some people’s religious beliefs over others. Especially if it denies people’s civil rights.(Emphasis mine)

Her words still ring so true today as they did in 1967. For her entire press statement see:

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