Almighty God Created the Races: Christianity, Interracial by Fay Botham

By Fay Botham

During this attention-grabbing cultural background of interracial marriage and its felony legislation within the usa, Fay Botham argues that religion--specifically, Protestant and Catholic ideals approximately marriage and race--had an important influence on criminal judgements pertaining to miscegenation and marriage within the century following the Civil struggle. Botham argues that divergent Catholic and Protestant theologies of marriage and race, bolstered by means of nearby changes among the West and the South, formed the 2 pivotal situations that body this quantity, the 1948 California preferrred court docket case of Perez v. Lippold (which effectively challenged California's antimiscegenation statutes at the grounds of spiritual freedom) and the 1967 U.S. ultimate court docket case Loving v. Virginia (which declared criminal bans on interracial marriage unconstitutional). Botham contends that the white southern Protestant idea that God "dispersed" the races, in preference to the yankee Catholic emphasis on human cohesion and customary origins, issues to ways in which faith motivated the process litigation and illuminates the spiritual bases for Christian racist and antiracist pursuits.

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State, for example, the Alabama Supreme Court ruled in 1872 that the state’s antimiscegenation law contravened interracial couples’ rights to make contracts (in this case, a marriage contract) as guaranteed in the Civil Rights Act, and to equal protection and [ 26 ] CATHOLIC CALIFORNIA due process. But the ousted southern Democrats never regarded Burns as a legitimate ruling. Five years later when they returned to power, Burns was decisively overturned by Green v. State, which came to serve as the classic legal response to allegations that antimiscegenation laws violated an interracial couple’s constitutional rights.

The first served as Moroney’s official reply to the court’s writ requiring him either to grant the marriage license to Perez and Davis or to state why the court should not compel him to do so. Moroney, of course, opted to explain the grounds upon which he refused to issue the license. 98 Stanley located a particularly nettlesome source on which to base this claim: the writings of Marshall’s old friend, Father John LaFarge. Stanley attempted to depict LaFarge’s views, rather than Marshall’s allegations, as orthodox Catholic doctrine, contending that the imprint “Permissu Superiorum” on the flyleaf of each of LaFarge’s books indicated the church’s official sanction of his writings.

In consultation with Perez and Davis, and with the CIC, Marshall developed a plan to test the case in the California courts. S. S. Constitution then “a law which forbids a Catholic couple to participate in the full sacramental life of the religion of their choice . . ”43 Although Marshall and the CIC were delighted to take the case, they would soon learn that the Los Angeles Archdiocese was less than eager to take a public stance advocating the Perez-Davis marriage. Marshall’s plan to attack the antimiscegenation statute on religious freedom grounds necessarily involved the archdiocese in the case, in that it might require Catholic officials to substantiate Marshall’s theological claims—a public legal battle the church had no interest in supporting.

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