WASHINGTON-Joe Solmonese, president of the Human Rights Campaign, offered the following statement today on the death of Mildred Loving. Mildred and Richard Loving challenged Virginia's ban on interracial marriage in the U.S. Supreme Court. The court's 1967 decision in the case struck down such laws nationwide.
"Mildred Loving and her husband Richard took a courageous stand against a law that criminalized their love simply because of their skin color. Their determination is an inspiration to the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community, which continues to face governmental interference in its most personal of affairs. Our thoughts are with her family at this difficult time."
June 2007 marked the fortieth anniversary of Loving v. Virginia. On that occasion, Mrs. Loving, who ordinarily eschewed the spotlight, issued a statement in which she declared her support for marriage equality for GLBT people.
"In the landmark case that brought the Lovings worldwide attention, the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously affirmed that marriage is a basic right for all Americans-yet it is still denied to the GLBT community. The end of this injustice would be a testament to the life of Mildred Loving, who believed so strongly that love can overcome hate."
The Human Rights Campaign is America's largest civil rights organization working to achieve gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender equality. By inspiring and engaging all Americans, HRC strives to end discrimination against GLBT citizens and realize a nation that achieves fundamental fairness and equality for all.
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