Friday, May 30, 2003


While I'm poking around the Nation, here's an interesting review of a couple of books on the history of interracial marriages in the U.S.:

As Kennedy points out, many sponsors of the Fourteenth Amendment "explicitly announced that it would not encroach upon states' authority to impose racially neutral prohibitions on interracial marriage. This history poses a dilemma for thoroughgoing originalists who object to antimiscegenation laws. If they are to stay true to their interpretive philosophy, such originalists must concede that Loving v. Commonwealth of Virginia was wrongly decided." He then twists the knife in a footnote: "It is a delicious irony that the most fervent champion of originalism on the Supreme Court in recent memory is an African-American--Justice Clarence Thomas--who was married in Virginia to a white woman named Virginia."