FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
The Loving Day Project, the world's largest network of multiracial celebrations, is coordinating its 13th consecutive year of nationwide events. Loving Day celebrations commemorate the June 12th, 1967 anniversary of Loving v. Virginia, the Supreme Court decision that declared all laws against interracial marriage in the United States to be unconstitutional.
"Loving," a film about Richard and Mildred Loving, the real-life couple who inspired Loving Day, world-premiered on May 16th at the Cannes International Film Festival in France. Focus Features will open the movie across the country in the U.S. this November, beginning with select cities on November 4th. From acclaimed writer/director Jeff Nichols ("Midnight Special," "Mud," "Take Shelter"), "Loving" celebrates the real-life courage and commitment of Richard and Mildred (portrayed in the film by Joel Edgerton and Ruth Negga), who married and then spent the next nine years fighting for the right to live as a family in their hometown. Their civil rights case, Loving v. Virginia, went all the way to the Supreme Court, which in 1967 reaffirmed the very foundation of the right to marry - and their love story has become an inspiration to couples ever since.
The Loving Day Project is calling on President Obama to recognize Loving Day as a Federal Observance by Presidential Proclamation. On May 31st, the Project will make a White House petition accessible via its official website (LovingDay.org), with the goal of getting 100,000 signatures within 30 days and drawing attention to this important milestone in American history. The direct link is https://wh.gov/isdTY
On April 29th, an ad tweeted by Old Navy featuring an interracial family generated a racist backlash, and then a wave of responses to that backlash. This included a response from Navy lieutenant and helicopter pilot Jack McCain, son of Arizona Senator John McCain, who is in an interracial marriage with Air Force Reserve Capt. Renee Swift. The controversy has resulted in national press. A similar ad for Macy's via Twitter on May 1st has also resulted in a racist backlash. A 2014 Super Bowl commercial for Cheerios received a similar reception after featuring an interracial couple and their daughter.
As recently as 2013, 11% of Americans still do not approve of interracial marriages, according to the Gallup Poll. In 1958, the year that Mr. and Mrs. Loving were arrested for their interracial marriage, the disapproval rate was 94%. 10% of all U.S. married couple households are interracial or interethnic according to the U.S. Census (2010), an increase of 28% since 2000. 17 million adult Americans (6.9%) of Americans are multiracial according to Pew Research (2015), which far exceeds the 2010 U.S. Census estimate of approximately 9 million.
The Loving Day Flagship Celebration in New York City will be the largest of the 2016 events with approximately 1,000 guests expected. It will be held on Saturday, June 11th from 3:00-7:00 PM (rain date, Sunday, June 12th) at Solar 1, located on the East River waterfront at 23rd Street in Manhattan (2420 FDR Drive, Service Road East, New York, NY 10010). Asahi beer will be served all day along with food for purchase from Big D's Grub Truck. There will be free performances by some of New York City's top DJs including Dhundee and Tomas Moves. This year's celebration is generously sponsored by Asahi, InterracialDatingCentral.com, Flavorpill, Big D's Grub Truck, Brooklyn Historical Society, Solar One, Mixed Marrow, MAVIN, and The Case for Loving. As is the tradition, our event is open to all ages.
Thousands of diverse supporters will participate in annual Loving Day Celebrations on or around June 12th in cities nationwide and worldwide. They range from small, intimate celebrations for families and friends, to large public events. In Los Angeles, the Mixed Remixed Festival will celebrate Loving Day with a film, book, and media festival at the Japanese American National Museum; performers in past events have included Comedy Central's Key and Peele. Celebrations are also planned for Lyon, France; Washington, DC; Philadelphia, PA; Birmingham, AL; New Orleans, LA; Houston, TX; Grand Rapids, MI; Burlington, VT; El Cerrito, CA; Decatur, GA; Griffin, GA; Eugene, OR; Idaho Falls, ID; Bloomington, IN; Abilene, TX; and Federal Way, WA. Many additional events are expected and will be listed on LovingDay.org.
About the Loving Day Project
Annual Loving Day celebrations commemorate the June 12th anniversary of Loving v. Virginia (1967), the Supreme Court decision that declared all laws against interracial marriage in the United States to be unconstitutional. Loving Day is celebrated in cities nationwide and internationally, collectively forming the world's largest network of multiethnic community celebrations. Our mission is to fight racial prejudice through education and to build multiethnic community. Our vision is to create an annual tradition that will make the Loving case a universally recognized civil rights landmark.