On November 4, 2016, the film Loving was released. The movie details the story of interracial couple Mildred Jeter and Richard Loving, which was brought to the attention of the nation in the Loving v. Virginia case. Prior to 1967, many states had anti-miscegenation laws, which prevented the marriage of and/or sexual involvement between people of different races.
These laws specifically targeted African Americans and White people who were intimately and/or romantically involved. The Loving decision invalidated Virginia’s 1924 Racial Integrity Act and made it lawful for an African American and American Indian woman, Mildred Jeter, to marry a White man, Richard Loving. Of course, there has been criticism of other underlying issues, such as Mildred Jeter’s age at the time that she married Richard Loving, which were not addressed in the landmark court decision. The couple first met when Mildred was 11, became romantically involved some years later, and married when Mildred was 18. Though many are bothered by the roughly 6 year age difference and raise concerns about whether or not the Loving’s relationship was one of choice or force, that is not a topic that I am well-versed enough in to discuss here. Rather, I make mention of the Loving decision in light of one of my fellow SOULE contributor’s recent posts about interracial dating.Read More