Was Pace v. Alabama (1883) & Loving
Wasthere ever a time in history where multicultural marriages and sex among peopleof diverse races was considered illegal? As preposterous as this idea may sounds,the answer is yes. Surprisingly, less than 40 years ago marrying someone of adifferent race was considered illegal. Black people could not be with whitepeople, nor could an Asian person be with a white person. Before the civil war majority of the sates inthe USA prohibited marriages between races.
This was termed as “”intermarriageor forms of illicit intercourse between the races.” During theReconstruction that happened in the southern states, none of the statutesagainst miscegenation appear to have been repealed.” These statutesdate back to colonial times, during the 1600s, which is the time that helped tomaintain the racial caste system and expand slavery. Two particular landmarkcases convey the importance of Anti-Miscegenation Statutes in the UnitedStates: Pace v. Alabama (1883) & Loving v. Virginia (1967).
The 1883 caseupholds the constitutionality of anti-miscegenation statutes whereas the 1967case affirms that these statutes are repugnant and unconstitutional. It isimportant to review these two cases in depth in terms of their facts, issues athand, and their rulings. Pace v. Alabama & Loving v. Virginia have theirdifferences and similarities but can be considered influential on Brown v.Board of Education and the Defense of Marriage Act (DOM).
Pace v. AlabamaFactsof the case: In this case of Pace vs. Alabama, Section4184 of the Code of Alabama states that “if any man and woman live together inadultery or fornication, each of them must, on the first conviction of theoffense, be fined not less than $100, and may also be imprisoned in the countyjail or sentenced to hard labor for the county for not more than six months. Onthe second conviction for the offense, with the same person, the offender mustbe fined not less than $300, and may be imprisoned in the county jail, orsentenced to hard labor for the county, for not more than 12 months; and for athird or any subsequent conviction with the same person, must be imprisoned inthe penitentiary or sentenced to hard labor for the county for two years.”In Section 4189 of the same Code itdeclares that “if any white person and any negro, or the descendant of anynegro to the third generation, inclusive, though one ancestor of eachgeneration was a white person, intermarry or live in adultery or fornicationwith each other, each of them must, on conviction, be imprisoned in thepenitentiary or sentenced to hard labor for the county for not less than twonor more than seven years.” In November, 1881, the plaintiff in error, TonyPace, a negro man, and Mary J.
Cox, a white woman, were indicted under section4189, in a circuit court of Alabama, for living together in a state of adulteryor fornication, and were tried, convicted, and sentenced, each to two years’imprisonment in the state penitentiary. On appeal to the supreme court of thestate the judgment was affirmed, and he brought the case here on writ of error,insisting that the act under which he was indicted and convicted is in conflictwith the concluding clause of the first section of the fourteenth amendment ofthe constitution, which declares that no state shall ‘deny to any person theequal protection of the laws.’ 106 U.S. 583, 584 J.
R. Tompkins, for plaintiff in error. Issues:Thecounsel of the plaintiff in error compares sections 4184 and 4189 of the Codeof Alabama, and assuming that the latter relates to the same offense as theformer, and prescribes a greater punishment for it, because one of the partiesis a negro, or of negro descent, claims that a discrimination is made againstthe colored person in the punishment designated, that conflicts with the clauseof the fourteenth amendment; prohibiting a state from denying to any personwithin its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws. The council isundoubtedly correct in his view of the purpose of the clause of the amendmentin question, that it was to prevent hostile and discriminating statelegislation against any person or class of persons.
Equality of protection under the lawsimplies not only accessibility by each one, regardless of their race, on thesame terms with others to the courts of the country for the security of hisperson and property, but that in the administration of criminal justice heshall not be subjected, for the same offense, to any greater or differentpunishment. Such was the view of congress in the re-enactment of thecivil-rights act, after the adoption of the amendment. That act, afterproviding that all persons within 106 U.S.
583, 585 the jurisdiction of the United States shallhave the same right, in every state and territory, to make and enforcecontracts, to sue, be parties, give evidence, and to the full and equal benefitof all laws and proceedings for the security of person and property as isenjoyed by white citizens, declares that they shall be subject ‘to likepunishment, pains, penalties, taxes, licenses, and exactions of every kind, andnone other, any law, statute, ordinance, regulation, or custom to the contrarynotwithstanding.’ 16 Section.C. 114, 16. The defect in the argument of counselconsists in his assumption that any discrimination is made by the laws ofAlabama in the punishment provided for the offense for which the plaintiff inerror was indicted when committed by a person of the African race and whencommitted by a white person.
The two sections of the Code cited are entirelyconsistent. The one prescribes, generally, a punishment for an offensecommitted between persons of different sexes; the other prescribes a punishmentfor an offense which can only be committed where the two sexes are of differentraces. There is in neither section any discrimination against either race.Section 4184 equally includes the offense when the persons of the two sexes areboth white and when they are both black. Section 4189 applies the samepunishment to offenders, the white and the black. Indeed, the offense againstwhich this latter section is aimed cannot be committed without involving thepersons of both races in the same punishment. Whatever discrimination is madein the punishment prescribed in the two sections is directed against theoffense designated and not against the person of any particular color or race.The punishment of each offending person, whether white or black is the same.
Ruling: Judgment was affirmed.Loving vs. VirginiaFactsof the case: In this case Loving vs. Virginia, MildredJeter and her new husband, Richard Loving, returned to their home in CarolineCounty, Virginia. The newlyweds had recently taken their vows in nearbyWashington, D.C. and were happy to begin their new life together as marriedcouple.
But there was a big obstacle to their marital bliss. The year was 1958,and Virginia was one of sixteen states that prohibited and punished interracialmarriages. Mildred was African American and her husband Richard was Caucasian.
Four months into their married life they were indicted by a grand jury.Issues:Thefollowing January, the Lovings pleaded guilty to the charge and were sentencedto one year in jail. The trial judge agreed to suspend the sentence if theLovings would leave the state for twenty-five years. The judge told Mr. andMrs. Loving: “Almighty God created the races…and he placed them on separatecontinents….
The fact he separated the races shows that He did not intend forthe races to mix.” The Loving’s moved to Washington, D.C. and appealed theirconviction on the grounds that Virginia law, The Racial Integrity Law of 1924,violated their rights to equal protection of the law and due process under theFourteenth Amendment. Rule:TheSupreme Court ruled unanimously to overturn their conviction and strike downthe Virginia law. The Court held, “There can be no doubt that restricting thefreedom to marry solely because of racial classifications violates the centralmeaning of the Equal Protection Clause.” The Court also found that the Virginialaw deprived the Loving’s of liberty without due process of law. “The freedomto marry has long been recognized as one of the vital personal rights essentialto the orderly pursuit of happiness by free men.
To deny this fundamentalfreedom on so unsupportable a basis as the racial classifications …is surely todeprive all the State’s citizens of liberty without due process of law.”Compare and contrast bothcases in regards to the Anti-Miscegenation Statutes.In the case Pace v. Alabama, section 4184of the Code of Alabama states that “if any man and woman live together in adulteryor fornication, each of them must, on the first conviction of the offense befined no less than $100 and may also be imprisoned in the county jail orsentenced to hard labor for the county for not more than six months.” Also in1883 the same code as stated above declares that ‘if any white person and anynegro, or the descendant of any negro to the third generation, inclusive,though one ancestor of each generation was a white person, intermarry or livein adultery or fornication with each other, each of them must, on conviction,be imprisoned in the penitentiary or sentenced to hard labor for the county fornot less than two nor more than seven years'(http://laws.findlaw.com/us/106/583.
html). In November 1881, the plaintiff in error,Tony Pace, a negro man, and Mary J. Cox, a white woman, were indicted undersection 4189, in a circuit court of Alabama, for living together in a state ofadultery or fornication, and were tried, convicted, and sentenced, each to twoyears of imprisonment in the state penitentiary(http://laws.
findlaw.com/us/106/583.html). On appeal to the Supreme Court ofthe state the judgment was affirmed, Pace brought the case here on writ oferror, insisting that the act under which he was indicted and convicted is inconflict with the concluding clause of the first section of the FourteenthAmendment of the Constitution, which declares that no state shall ‘deny to anyperson the equal protection of the laws’ 106 U.S.
583, 584. In Loving v. Virginia originates from theSupreme Court of Appeals of Virginia in 1967, very many years after Pace v.Alabama. Once again, Anti-Miscegenation Statutes come back into the bigpicture. This case is landmark in the sense that it presents a constitutionalquestion never presented in the courts in history: whether a statutory schemeadopted by the State of Virginia to prevent marriages between persons solely onthe basis of racial classifications violates the Equal Protection and DueProcess Clauses of the Fourteenth Amendment. In June of 1958 two residents ofVirginia, Mildred Jeter, a Negro woman, and Richard Loving, a white man, weremarried in the District of Columbia pursuant to its laws and later returned toCaroline County in the state of Virginia where they continued their lives ashusband and wife.
Itis apparent that both cases deal with Anti-Miscegenation Statutes. The Pacecase took place in Alabama in 1883 whereas the Lovings’ case took place inVirginia in 1967 many years after. The Lovings’ case also took place during theheight of the Civil Rights Movement as well. A major difference between the twocases is that Pace was charged with adultery and fornication whereas theLovings were charged with interracial marriage. Even though this case didn’tdirectly address the act of interracial marriages, the State of Alabama went onto condemn these marriages because the state was scared of the children thatmay be produced out of these marriages. It is evident that there are twodifferent time periods and two different issues being addressed under theAnti-miscegenation statutes in these casesAnalyze howthis statute could have influenced Brown v. Board of Education, 347 U.
S. 483(1954) and the Fourteenth AmendmentThere were several cases that came to theSupreme Court, from the states of Kansas, South Carolina, Virginia, andDelaware in regards to segregation in schools. There were several minors whowere represented by attorneys seeking assistance with obtaining admission topublic schools that were located in the minor’s community. The minors did notwant to attend the schools and continue to be segregated. These students hadbeen denied the opportunity to attend public schooling in their communities dueto laws that were in place that allowed segregation by race.
All of the lowercourts in each state denied the minors admission, with the exception ofDelaware who only allowed the minors in Delaware to be admitted to the publicschools because of their superiority to the African American schools.Ultimately Delaware joined the other states in requesting to have the U.S.Supreme Court review the cases. In this case it was the denial of admission topublic schools in the minor’s communities based only on race, a violation oftheir Fourteenth Amendment rights? Yes. All of the justices agreed that denyingthe minor African American students admission to the public schools in theircommunities based solely on their race was a violation of their FourteenthAmendment rights. This right would be located in the Equal Protection Clause ofthe Fourteenth Amendment. The justices agreed that although the states wereproviding separate but equal school settings they were still violating therights of the minors.
The justices stated that segregating African Americanchildren in public school systems would continue to make them feel inferior.The justices also felt that having separate but equal school settings wouldaffect the minors socially and psychologically. They also agreed that separatebut equal was unequal either way it was observed in the circumstance of publiceducation.
Separate Opinion(s): There were noseparate opinions in Brown v. Board of Education. However there were questionsthat arose while the justices were deciding the case. All of the justicesobviously were oppose to segregation in the public school system, but theyquestioned whether the Constitution gave the Supreme Court the power to changethe segregation laws.
After careful analysis the justices came to theconclusion that the Fourteenth Amendment did give them the power to putsegregation to an end.Explain the significanceof this statute to the Defense of Marriage Act (DOM).The Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA enactedon September 21, 1996, 1 U.S.C. § 7 and 28U.S.C.
§ 1738C) is a United States federal law that allows states torefuse to recognize same-sex marriages granted under the laws of other states.Hence marriages of opposite sexes have to be relaxed and accepted. This brought into effect theneed of the Anti-MiscegenationStatutes.The Defense of Marriage Act is an act thatwas passed in 1996, making it illegal for the federal government to recognizesame sex marriages. The sanctity of marriage between a man and woman should beprotected because children need a male and female role model in their lives,children will start to be taught that homosexuality is actually a good thing,and it will keep the traditional definition of marriage intact.
Being exposedto both the male and female sex, is important to the developmental needs ofchildren because it helps to form their sexual identity. Being raised by parents of the same sexcan make a difference in the way the child is developed. Even newborn infantscan distinguish the differences between a male and female.
A study by SusanTurrell found that relationship violence was a significant problem forhomosexuals. 40 percent of gay men reported having experienced violence intheir relationship; 13 percent reported sexual violence and 83 percent reportedemotional abuse. (vol 13, pp 281-293). A researcher named Henry Biller andwritten several books on this topic: Even if the father and mother behave ingenerally similar ways, they provide contrasting images for the infant …Mothers and fathers have different verbal styles when communicating.
Involved fathers are more likely tostimulate the infant to explore and investigate new objects whereas motherstend to engage their infants in relatively pre-structured and predictableactivities. The father and mother offer the child two different kinds ofpersons to learn about as well as providing separate sources of love andsupport. (Fathers: A Diverse Group) If heterosexual marriage remains protected,children will at least have the benefit of stabilized familial relationships. ReferencesDavis,A. (2006). Bill requires gay’s history to be taught: STATE SENATOR WANTS CALIFORNIATO LEAD WAY. San Jose Mercury News (CA), Retrieved Thursday, January 27, 2015from the Newspaper Source database.
FederalDefense of Marriage Act (DOMA)http://gaylife.about.com/cs/gaymarriage/i/doma.htm Maggie,Gallagher.
Testimony United States Senate Committee on the Judiciary “Whatis Needed to Defend the Bipartisan Defense of Marriage Act of 1996?” September4, 2003.http://judiciary.senate.gov/print_testimony.cfm?id=906=2540 Roopnarine,J.
(2004). Fathers: A Diverse Group. PsycCRITIQUES, Retrieved Thursday, January25, 2015 from the PsycINFO database. Turrell,Susan. “A descriptive analysis of Same-Sex Relationship Violence for aDiverse Sample,” Journal of Family Violence (vol 13, pp 281-293). Szypszak,C.
(2011). Understanding law for public administration. Boston: Jones .http://laws.findlaw.com/us/106/583.html http://www.law.cornell.edu/supct/html/historics/USSC_CR_0388_0001_ZO.html