326 - Mixed Love



Mildred Loving (African American accent)

And I saw this light, you know, and I woke up and there was the policeman standing beside the bed, and he told us to get up, that we was under arrest.

Voice of America narrator (Standard American accent)

Mildred and Richard Loving were arrested in 1958 for breaking Virginia’s law banning interracial marriage. They sued and in 1967 the Supreme Court struck down so-called “miscegenation laws.” Since then interracial marriage has steadily increased to 15 per cent of all new marriages, according to US Government figures.

Gerri Buchanan (African American accent)

Society has become more accepting of it, although we still get looks sometimes.

Voice of America

Gerri Buchanan and Tom Rogers have been married for five years. Both have children from previous interracial marriages; Tom’s school age daughters and Gerri’s adult son. They are one of a growing number of multiracial families in New York, like mayor elect Bill de Blasio’s. His wife, Chirlane McCray, is African American and they have two biracial children. Political observers say the appeal of de Blasio’s blended family was partly responsible for his overwhelming win in November’s mayoral election.

Bill de Blasio (Standard American accent)

Ladies and gentlemen, give it up for the next first lady of New York City!

Voice of America

Ken Tanabe founded a celebration of interracial families called Loving Day, named after Mildred and Richard Loving. He says de Blasio’s election reflects profound change in New York.

Ken Tanabe (Standard American accent)

It’s always been a diverse place, but even more and more couples that are interracial and more and more people that identify as multiethnic, and with the election of Bill de Blasio, you know, I think we’re seeing more and more acceptance and support for… those families and couples and individuals.

Voice of America

Writer Aja Monet says the de Blasio marriage is helping change the image of African American women in popular culture and politics.

Aja Monet

You know, if you don’t look a certain way, if you’re not Eurocentric in your… in your figure or in your identity. I mean, look how many times people have teared… tore down Michelle Obama based off her body and based off of how she… she looks. And this is from white men a lot of the time.