Next Tuesday (June 12th) marks National Loving Day. Although this is mostly just celebrated in the states, I think it deserves special recognition in the UK too. Currently very few communities in the UK know about it’s origin and what makes it important.
So What is Loving Day?
Loving Day celebrates the … racial prejudices within communities and promotes equal and fair opportunities which encourage acceptance within multiracial partnerships. It is not widely celebrated in the UK, but celebratory events do take place all over the world throughout the year. Loving Day itself is in place to encourage the education and representation of miscegenation throughout the world. It is not a recognised holiday in the USA but anti- miscegenation activists are working hard to make President Obama make it so in order to promote awareness and tolerance.
A Whole Lotta History
In 1967, the United States Supreme Court disregarded all all anti-miscegenation laws remaining in 16 states with a spokesperson stating “There can be no doubt that restricting the freedom to marry solely because of racial classifications violates the central meaning of the equal protection clause.”remaining in 16 states citing “There can be no doubt that restricting the freedom to marry solely because of racial classifications violates the central meaning of the equal protection clause.” Prior to this, state laws banned interracial marriage (or marriage between a white person and a non- white person). The name comes from the story of Richard and Mary Loving, who met when she was 11 and he was 17. Childhood sweethearts, they married at the age of 18 as Mary had fallen pregnant. Unaware that interracial marriage was against state law, they were both arrested in their hometown of Richmond several hours later and pleaded guilt to ‘cohabiting out side marriage’ avoiding jail time by agreeing to flee Virginia. The couple moved to Washington and began what was to be a long legal battle with the American Civil Liberties Union. The couple were overjoyed to find the court ruled unanimously in their favour, and every June 12th their victory is celebrated.
What Can I do to Take Part?
There are a variety of annual events hosted which you can take part in all over the world, mostly in New York. But many UK communities host events in honour of Loving Day with cocktail parties, picnics or meals out and many couples take some time out to go on a special date or romantic dinner. Loving Day events can be small and simple, but they can also be big events for the whole community so like any successful event it simply needs promotion. If you fancy starting your own dinner or street party, list your celebration on the Loving Day webpage where people can join you to honour those who fought for the right to choose freedom to marry the person you love.