Is it true? Is all you need really love? This week marks the 50th anniversary of the Loving case. On June 12 1967, Mildred and Richard Loving won their landmark Supreme Court case. That meant the end of state bans on interracial marriage. Richard Loving was white, Mildred was Black – and they fell in love. And on June 12, every year, various groups of racial stripes celebrate this anniversary.
But is there really something to celebrate? After seeing statistics that show that the number of police-reported hate crimes against Muslims jumped by 60 per cent in 2015 compared to the previous year, according to Statistics Canada, I’m less sanguine about the possibility of love solving all our world’s woes. Am I just a feminist killjoy?
Well, on Sense of Place we devoted a full hour to celebrating and scrutinising Loving Day. A cast of talented characters joined me to talk about what the day means for them. Dr. Daniel McNeil is an associate professor in the Department of Migration and Diaspora Studies at Carleton University in Ottawa. He has held the Ida B. Wells-Barnett Professorship in African and Black Diaspora Studies at DePaul University in Chicago and taught Media and Cultural Studies at the University of Hull and Newcastle University in the United Kingdom. He has written the very first monograph to analyze the history of mixed race through a transatlantic lens, entitled. Sex and Race in the Black Atlantic: Mulatto Devils and Multiracial Messiahs. Also joining me is Dr. Renee Romano, author of Mixing Up. We also had the pleasure of chatting with Sheryll Cashin, who wrote a piece in the New York Times about why interracial love will save the world (and why she disliked that headline!). Finally, we also chatted with Jeff Chiba Stearns, founder of the mixed festival, Hapa-Palooza, here in town – bringing it home, so to speak – explaining why it’s important to think about the experiences of mixed folks here in Vancouver.
And in case you want to read more, here’s yours truly speaking about this topic in the Globe and Mail: https://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/relationships/where-is-the-love-how-tolerant-is-canada-of-its-interracial-couples/article32206930/
Listen to the interview HERE