Clueless White Woman

August 1, 2008

I miss living in a blue state

Filed under: history,homophobia,racism,South Carolina — by clueless @ 12:59 pm

I went to school in Boston and lived there for three years after graduating. After that we moved to Indiana, then most recently South Carolina. While I really hated the traffic and cost of living, I desperately miss the politics — and things like overturning the no-marriage-here-if-you-can’t-marry-there law just make me miss it more.

I’d probably actually be happier in San Francisco (better environmental programs and legislation out there), but I sure ain’t fittin’ in down here

Mournful moaning aside, it is interesting to explore the history of the original law a little bit.

The law specifically barred out-of-state residents from marrying here if the marriage would be considered void in their home state. The origins of the law could be traced to the national backlash over the interracial marriage of heavyweight boxing champion Jack Johnson. At the time, 30 of 48 states banned interracial marriage, and many other states, including Massachusetts, enacted provisions that would keep interracial couples from crossing borders to marry in their jurisdiction.

It is important to remember that The North, while not as institutionally racist as The South, certainly wasn’t perfect. Supporting the discrimination of another state, even if not directly practicing it yourself, encourages the practice elsewhere.

Also worth noting is that a law originally discriminating against race ended up discriminating against sexual orientation. Translation: just because YOU are not the one being negatively affected today, doesn’t mean YOU won’t be negatively affected in 95 years. Equal rights are in everybody’s interest.

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July 28, 2008

read the fine print…

Excerpt from Executive Order 9066:

…I hereby authorize and direct the Secretary of War… to prescribe military areas… from which any or all persons may be excluded, and with respect to which, the right of any person to enter, remain in, or leave shall be subject to whatever restrictions the Secretary of War or the appropriate Military Commander may impose in his discretion. The Secretary of War is hereby authorized to provide for residents of any such area who are excluded therefrom, such transportation, food, shelter, and other accommodations as may be necessary… to accomplish the purpose of this order.

I don’t think I ever realized just how innocuous-sounding the initial stage of “put every Japanese-American in prison” was. I knew it happened, and knew it was bad, but I didn’t know it was written so incredibly vaguely.

Mixed Race America draws a strong parallel between the 1942 Executive Branch overreach and the 200x Executive Branch overreach. The ability to “legal power to order the indefinite military detentions of civilians” was wrong then, so why is it right now?

originally found via What Tami Said

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