Fact and Fiction in Mixed-Race Marriages

Posted in Articles, Identity Development/Psychology, Media Archive, Social Science on 2017-07-30 17:49Z by Steven

Fact and Fiction in Mixed-Race Marriages

Talking Apes: How natural selection reprogrammed the brain for language
Psychology Today

David Ludden Ph.D., Professor of Psychology
Georgia Gwinnett College, Lawrenceville Georgia

Virginia is for lovers” may be the state’s travel slogan, but 50 years ago one couple was banished from the state for committing the crime of getting married. Richard Loving, a man of European descent, had fallen in love with Mildred Jeter, a woman of African and Native American origins. They wanted to marry, but Virginia’s anti-miscegenation laws forbade mixed-race marriages. So they crossed the Potomac and said their vows in the nation’s capital, which had no such restrictions.

When they returned home, Mr. and Mrs. Loving were arrested. Instead of going to prison, the couple agreed to leave the state permanently. With the help of the ACLU, the Lovings sued the Commonwealth of Virginia. However, it wasn’t until 1967 that the Supreme Court declared anti-miscegenation laws unconstitutional. At that time, 16 states still had such laws on the books.

Since then, the number of mixed-race marriages has increased steadily. In 1970, just three years after the Supreme Court decision, surveys showed there were about 900,000 mixed-race couples living in the United. Three decades later, studies showed a five-fold increase to 4.9 million. These numbers include not just black-white marriages but rather all biracial couplings—any mixture of black, white, Hispanic, Asian, or Native American—and regardless of whether the pair is legally married or cohabiting.

Ironically, Virginia now has a higher percentage of black-white marriages than any other state. So maybe now Virginia really is for lovers after all…

Read the entire article here.

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