This blog was created to serve as an inspiration to all who read aspire, to love and to live a life of purpose.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Couples Who Inspire- Richard and Mildred Loving Edition

Hey everyone! Some new pictures of Richard and Mildred Loving just got published courtesy of I was so excited to see these photos because having studied thier case Loving v. Virginia in law school, it felt good to put faces to the landmark case. What I found especially inspiring about this couple's love story is that despite the fact that, as you and I could imagine, it must have been extremely challenging, the Lovings stuck it out....I tell you, there's nothing like it!

Incase you didn't know the story of the Lovings, here's a brief recap.....

Richard (a white man) and Mildred (an African American woman) were originally from Virginia where interracial marriage was illegal under the Racial Integrity Act. In order to evade the ramifications of the law, they went to DC where interracial marriage had been made legal, to get married in June 1958. When they got back to Virginia, they were snatched from thier beds by the police and indicted for marrying out of the state and then returning to Virginia. Apparently, it was illegal to do that as well.  They lost in the lower court. Specifically, the trial judge said:
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.
Say What?!?!?!?
Anyway, from 1959, the Lovings continually fought an uphill legal battle. In 1967, their case made it to the Supreme Court which ruled in thier favor stating that the Virginia law banning interracial marriage violated the constitution. In the court's own words, 
Marriage is one of the "basic civil rights of man," fundamental to our very existence and survival.... To deny this fundamental freedom on so unsupportable a basis as the racial classifications embodied in these statutes, classifications so directly subversive of the principle of equality at the heart of the Fourteenth Amendment, is surely to deprive all the State's citizens of liberty without due process of law. The Fourteenth Amendment requires that the freedom of choice to marry not be restricted by invidious racial discrimination. Under our Constitution, the freedom to marry, or not marry, a person of another race resides with the individual and cannot be infringed by the State.

Unfortunately, Richard died 8 years after the decision, in a car accident in 1975. Mildred died of Pneumonia in 2008. But their inspirational legacy will always live on. The couple had three children; Peggy, Sidney and Donald.
Of course, despite the Loving decision which set to dismantle all laws that ban marriage based on race and superseding ones, we all know racism is still a big issue in today's world. God help us all.  
Here are photos of Mr. and Mrs. Loving and their beautiful family. Their last name "Loving" couldn't be more fitting :-) Enjoy!
Don't you just LOVE love? *big smile* Stay Inspired......
*For more about Loving v. Virginiaask Wikipedia.

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