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The Lovings pleaded guilty to violating the Act and were sentenced to one year in jail, though the trial judge gave them the option of avoiding incarceration on the condition they leave the State and not return for twenty-five years.4 During the course of the proceeding the trial judge asserted that: "Almighty God created the races of 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."5 After Virginia's Supreme Court of Appeals affirmed the conviction the Supreme Court of the United States reversed the decision on the grounds that the Constitution of the United States prohibits states from barring interracial marriages. This annotation is only going to focus on the miscegenation laws and the view society had of children born out of interracial marriages.In so doing, the Supreme Court invalidated similar laws in fifteen States. The author states that the freedom to marry has long been recognized as one of the vital personal rights essential to the orderly pursuit of happiness by freemen.With classification, people were given certain rights and privileges.If a person was White, they received the rights and privileges; if they were Black or of the mixed race they received nothing.In the 16's rape carried the death penalty, but by 1795 the death penalty for rape was abolished. 39 Clotye Larson, Children in Interracial Homes, Marriage Across the Color Line, 67, 68 (1965). Blacks and mixed race people were prosecuted for rape much more than were Whites for two basic reasons: according to the law Blacks and mixed race people could not testify against a White person in court; and rape by a White man was not looked down upon during these time periods.24 The author takes a historical approach to interracial sex and marriage and how these two actions were perceived in Virginia. 40 Vladimir Piskacek & Marlene Golub, Children of Interracial Marriages, Interracial Marriage: Expectations and Realities, 51, 57 (1973).
American Wedding: Same-Sex Marriage and the Miscegenation Analogy, 73 B. Virginia, and the post script of both States after Loving. As time progressed, the laws changed, and interracial marriages were not banned, but rather, the law mandated banishment forever of the White party to any interracial marriage that occurred, if free, within three months after such marriage.17 If the child was a "bastard child" born from a couple not going through the wedding ceremony, the child was taken by the warden of the church in the parish and bound to be a servant until he or she attained the age of 30.18 After 1691, the legislature reduced the percent of African American ancestry a person had to have in them to be defined as the mixed-race.However, when people talk about race relations, the focus is on Blacks and Whites. The science of Eugenics also supported the belief that children produced from these interracial marriages were inferior.No matter what ethnic groups are involved, one major result of these marriages are children. The Devil and the One Drop Rule: Racial Categories, African Americans, and the U. The science is based on the proposition that most human ills are hereditary and that the human race can be perfected by encouraging the mating of healthy productive stock and discouraging the reproduction among the less fit.13 Thus, bans on interracial marriages were supported by science and non-science means.The Supreme Court case, which directly speaks to this topic, is Loving v. In 1958 Richard Loving and Mildred Jeter married in Washington, D. and returned to Virginia together as husband and wife. The problem arose in that since 1961 Virginia banned interracial marriages.The Lovings were prosecuted under a statute enacted in 1924 entitled "An Act to Preserve Racial Integrity."1 The statute said that in Virginia no White person could marry anyone other than a white person.2 The law made it a crime not only to enter into an interracial marriage in the State of Virginia, but it also criminalized interracial marriages outside the state with the intent of evading Virginia's prohibition.3 Furthermore the law stated that children born out of such a union were deemed in the eyes of the State to be illegitimate and without the protections and privileges accorded to the children of lawfully wedded parents. This article compares the history of interracial marriages with that of same-sex marriages.
Children from interracial marriages are no longer denied the same benefits and privileges as the children prior to Loving. Children of Black and White Marriages, Black and White Mixed Marriages (1978). Peter Wallenstein, Race, Marriage, and the Law of Freedom: Alabama and Virginia, 1860's-1960's, 70 Chi.-Kent L. The Alabama Constitution of 1865 directed the legislature to make interracial marriages between White and people of African ancestry "null and void and make the parties to any such marriage subject to criminal prosecutions."14 The legislature established a penalty of 2-7 years imprisonment for both member of any interracial couple. This bibliography will focus on the additional time periods from 1660-1690, and 1690-1770 (the history basically holds true for both Virginia and Alabama).