Tuesday, 6 May 2008

Land of the Frauds

The recent passing of Mildred Loving reminds us that, as late as 1967, it was illegal for Americans to marry across racial lines in seventeen states of the Union. This disgraceful stain on America might not have been removed until well into the 'Seventies had that brave woman not taken her fight to have her marriage declared legal in her home state of Virginia to the Supreme Court.

I find it a sobering thought that the circumstances of my own conception were literally outlawed across a third of the United States just a year and a half before my birth. It is almost impossible to believe that, just a generation ago, a juridical offence against human dignity of the kind we naturally associate with Nazi Germany and Apartheid-era South Africa was allowed to spread its stench among so many Americans at the behest of racist state authorities and with the complaisant acquiescence of everyone else.

Morbid reminders such as these should leave little doubt as to which North American nation is best qualified to be considered the "land of the free".


Ti-Guy said...

The anti-miscegenation law stayed on the books in Alabama until 2000.

Alabama...I so want to go there. I love adventure tourism.

Aeneas the Younger said...

Canada was and is, far from perfect, but to many slaves of African descent it was "Freedom's Land."

Sir Francis said...

What's incredible is that Loving had to have Bobby Kennedy personally refer this matter to the Supreme Court. None of America's post-Reconstruction administrations saw this as something worth taking the initiative on. Apparently, even Johnson's "Great Society" and JFK's new, enlightened "Camelot" era of civil rights had room for this outrage. Amazing and sad.

Tomm said...

A hat tip to change.

If we won't evolve (socially), we will perish.


Red Tory said...

I remember seeing former Defense Secretary William Cohen and his wife who’s black (or non-white in any case) talking a while back about some of the challenges of their marriage given he was a high-profile figure in Washington and him quite earnestly saying something to the effect that it was so amazing and “could only happen in America”… Holy shit, I wanted to pitch whatever was handy at the TV after that phenomenal bit of ignorance (or arrogance, I suppose you could also call it) came tripping out of his mouth.