Interracial marriage is a form of marriage involving spouses who belong to different races or racialized ethnicities. In the past, such marriages were outlawed in the United States , Nazi Germany and apartheid-era South Africa as miscegenation. In interracial marriage was forbidden by law in 31 USA states. Virginia , which ruled that race-based restrictions on marriages, such as the anti-miscegenation law in the state of Virginia , violated the Equal Protection Clause of the United States Constitution.
Blocking Racial Intermarriage Laws in 1935 and 1937
Interracial Marriage Laws History and Timeline
The Voice of Action , published by the Communist Party, rallied opposition to the bill that would have banned racial intermarriage in Washington State. The bill introduced by King County representative Dorian Todd would have outlawed marriage between whites and nonwhites. The most curious part of the bill is its definition of white as "persons whose ancestral lineage can be traced to inhabitants of any European country which had a political existence, or a national identity, or racial distinction as a self-governing state prior to , except those of Eastern and southeastern Europe embracing the Balkan peninsula or states, and Russia as now delineated…". The anti-Slavic and anti-Semitic racial demarcation echoed theories promoted by Adolph Hitler's Nazi party in The Northwest Enterprise also followed news about intermarriage laws in other states ; :. When the legislature took up the issue of racial intermarriage in , the Northwest Enterprise again helped rally the black community to fight the new bill.
On June 12, , the Supreme Court issued its Loving v. Virginia decision, which struck down laws that banned inter-racial marriages as unconstitutional. Here is a brief recap of this landmark civil rights case. As of , 16 states had still not repealed anti-miscegenation laws that forbid interracial marriages.
In the United States, anti-miscegenation laws also known as miscegenation laws were laws passed by most states that prohibited interracial marriage and interracial sexual relations. Some such laws predate the establishment of the United States, some dating to the later 17th or early 18th century, a century or more after the complete racialization of slavery. Supreme Court ruled in Loving v. Virginia that such laws were unconstitutional in the remaining 16 states. Typically defining mixed race marriages or sexual relations as a felony , these laws also prohibited the issue of marriage licenses and the solemnization of weddings between mixed race couples and prohibited the officiating of such ceremonies.