Fifty Years of Loving v. Virginia and the Continued Pursuit of Racial Equality

Source: Fordham Law Review, Vol. 86, No. 6, May 2018

From the introduction:
It has been ten years since this journal last published a volume exploring Loving v. Virginia, the U.S. Supreme Court’s 1967 decision invalidating antimiscegenation laws on equal protection and due process grounds. In that time, the American public has been treated to a virtual smorgasbord of new opportunities to love Loving. First, in a way few could have imagined fifty years ago when seventeen states criminalized interracial marriages, that decision has provided the impetus for a “global network” of celebrations designed to praise interracial relationships and families and to combat discrimination. …. Finally, Loving, and the right to marry it identified, was at the forefront of the national litigation strategy to secure the ability of gay and lesbian couples to enter into marital unions that concerned not only states but also the federal government. Advocates for equal marriage rights repeatedly invoked the Loving Court’s language recognizing marriage as “one of the ‘basic civil rights of man,’ fundamental to our very existence and survival,” in challenging legal provisions that limited marriage to individuals of the opposite sex. Unsurprisingly, Loving subsequently figured prominently in the Court’s 2015 decision in Obergefell v. Hodges, which finally settled legal debates about the right of LGBTQ couples to marry. The Court held that states may not deny same-sex couples the opportunity to formalize their intimate relationships through legal marriage without violating the Fourteenth Amendment’s guarantee of equal treatment and dignity under the law. ….

…..Our goal in organizing this Symposium was to explore how Loving has influenced U.S. society institutionally, demographically, and relationally. Doing so obviously required a focus on the present, where the disruptive effects of the interracial “mixing” and racial inclusion Loving endorsed can be seen in the growth of marriages and dating across racial lines. Nearly 15 percent, or one in seven, of all new marriages in 2008 were between people …. The four roundtable discussions and two keynote addresses that constituted this Symposium were designed to advance the multicontextual program of study just described through robust and wide-ranging conversation about Loving and the challenges to equality that attend racial mixture today. While legal issues figured prominently, we fostered a truly interdisciplinary discourse about interracial relationships and racial mixture, which drew on the insights of scholars from a variety of academic backgrounds. ….

Articles include:
The Loving Story: Using a Documentary to Reconsider the Status of an Iconic Interracial Married Couple
By Regina Austin

Hollywood Loving
By Kevin Noble Maillard

Enemy and Ally: Religion in Loving v. Virginia and Beyond
By Leora F. Eisenstadt

Loving’s Legacy: Decriminalization and the Regulation of Sex and Sexuality
By Melissa Murray

Prejudice, Constitutional Moral Progress, and Being “On the Right Side of History”: Reflections on Loving v. Virginia at Fifty
By Linda C. McClain

Residential Segregation and Interracial Marriages
By Rose Cuison Villazor

Loving Lessons: White Supremacy, Loving v. Virginia, and Disproportionality in the Child Welfare System
By Leah A. Hill

LGBT Equality and Sexual Racism
By Russell K. Robinson & David M. Frost

The Hope of Loving and Warping Racial Progress Narratives
By Jasmine Mitchell

Fear of a Multiracial Planet: Loving’s Children and the Genocide of the White Race
By Reginald Oh

Evolution of the Racial Identity of Children of Loving: Has Our Thinking About Race and Racial Issues Become Obsolete?
By Kevin Brown

Multiracial Malaise: Multiracial as a Legal Racial Category
By Taunya Lovell Banks

More Than Love: Eugenics and the Future of Loving v. Virginia
By Osagie K. Obasogie

Race and Assisted Reproduction: Implications for Population Health
By Aziza Ahmed

When a Wrongful Birth Claim May Not Be Wrong: Race, Inequality, and the Cost of Blackness
By Kimani Paul-Emile

Unstitching Scarlet Letters?: Prosecutorial Discretion and Expungement
By Brian M. Murray

The New Writs of Assistance
By Ian Samuel

Family Courts as Certifying Agencies: When Family Courts Can Certify U Visa Applications for Survivors of Intimate Partner Violence
By Sylvia Lara Altreuter

Implicit Racial Biases in Prosecutorial Summations: Proposing an Integrated Response
By Praatika Prasad Read More View PDF