Today marks the 51st anniversary of Loving v. Virginia, the landmark Supreme Court decision that invalidated state laws restricting interracial marriage. The plaintiffs in the case were Richard and Mildred Loving (whom they have since made a movie about), a white man and black woman whose marriage was deemed illegal according to Virginia state law. The Lovings appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court, which ruled unanimously that so-called “anti-miscegenation” statutes were unconstitutional under the 14th Amendment. (The law they broke by marrying each other was called the “Act to Preserve Racial Integrity”… seriously. Oh my word. And if you broke the law you could spend 1-5 years in state prison.)
And in case you think it’s crazy that in my parents’ own lifetime this was still illegal… then take note that while the ruling forced 16 states to change their laws regarding interracial marriage, some states were slow to alter their laws. The last state to officially accept the ruling was Alabama, which only removed an anti-miscegenation statute from its state constitution in 2000!!!! That is the year I graduated from high school, people! That is insane to me.
It never ceases to blow my mind that it was not that long ago that our marriage would not have been legal and our two loves may have never even have existed if it weren’t for this ruling. I am forever indebted to those who came before us and fought the hard fight against injustice and inequality, and am determined to continue to do the same today.
Which is why we are SO happy that our clientele has always represented a diverse cross section of America (and beyond)!! We are ALWAYS overjoyed to celebrate love between ALL people and are so honored to have gotten to capture so many beautiful couples’ love stories over the years!!
(Photo by Caili Helsper)
And I couldn’t post without a little shoutout to a feature today that we are really humbled by. The Huffington Post reached out and asked if we’d like to be a part of an article celebrating Loving Day and of course we said yes! They asked us to describe our marriage in one word and explain why it’s still important to celebrate Loving Day even today, and this was our response (mostly worded by James, who though you may not see much of his writing around here, loves to write and is great with words):
“Blessed. We are blessed to have found each other, and blessed in the work that we do together as a family.”
“We think that it is so important for people to see that we are just a normal couple, and to see the beauty in life when two people combine their own experiences and see one another for who they truly are and not just as labels.”
Here’s to celebrating the beauty of all marriages!
Happy Loving Day, friends! XOXO