Miscegenation laws are as a result of a set of developments that were witnessed in the United States. Each of these developments had outstanding influence on specific issues would have been handled if the arose in the society. One of the elements is race, which dictates that human beings are the same despite their color. The second element is marriage, which dictates that individuals should be allowed to marry the spouses of their choice regardless of differences in color. The third development is elimination of slavery, which gave equal rights to all people.
One of the ways through which marriage has been used to regulate race is through declaration by whites that it had come a time for them to intermarry with blacks as they found them equally human. “We love our opposites," they declared. "It is in the nature of things that we should do so, and where nature has free course, men like those we have indicated, whether anti-slavery or pro-slavery, conservative or radical, democrat or republican, will marry and be given in marriage to the most perfect specimens of the colored race.” (Pascoe, 2009 P. 28. The second way is through recognition of marriage as a product of love affection between two people. “Reaching for an analogy that could ground their point, the pamphleteers fastened on the "natural" attraction between men and women, then claimed that the joining of two races in marriage was every bit as natural as the joining of two sexes.” (Pascoe, 2009 P.29) Also, in marriage men have been recognized as the heads in marriages and they are the owners of all properties in the family including the wives.
“Marriage will never set us free” is a phrase that is likely to have an extremely wide meaning. It is supposed to define marriage as a commitment where all parties have respective roles to undertake. Once a couple is married, the partnership is permanent. They have to remain bound by the vows they take during the marriage. The daily stay with each other means additional duties for them every day. Therefore, married people will never be free.
Marriage in the United States has been an extremely sensitive social element. There has been concern over as defined by different people and stakeholders in the society. One of the main supporters and contributors to development of marriage is the legislation. There have been various laws that have been published to define the status of marriages in the United States. “In 1893, the Oregon legislature added insult to injury by adding a civil prohibition on marriages” (Pascoe, 2009 P. 85). This means that the legislature is responsible of the extensive changes that are being witnessed in the modern society. It is in a position to control marriage activities through definition of various principles that are critical in defining the status of a marriage. Marriage is defined through civil principles that are critical in determination of the welfare of the society since marriage is a critical path which most members of the society follow.
The other element that has promoted marriage as a public concern is the court. There are standards that have been set by the courts to ensure that marriage is controlled and governed accordingly. There are laws that have been developed and applied by courts in support for marriages in the society. “As these details suggest, the enforcement of miscegenation law relied heavily on local officials, including county clerks, who issued marriage .licenses; justices of the peace, who performed marriage ceremonies; and district attorneys, who prosecuted sex crimes.” (Pascoe, 2009 P. 89). The law being implemented by courts was supposed to define the positive effect of marriage. The court in the United States did not prosecute for all sexual crimes that were committed in marriage. Therefore, according to the provisions given by the court, marriage was given an allowance to experience challenges. However, these challenges were not supposed to be the main causes of divorces or permanent disagreements. Through its extensive respect for marriages, courts have assisted in publicizing marriages through making it attractive to most people in the society.
Also, citizenship has been critically used in publicizing marriages. There are considerations by the government that the society should allow all people to satisfy their love affections. This can only be achieved through presence of a set of policies that support marriage between people of different forms of citizenship in the country. Foreigners who obtain citizenship for the United States are allowed to get into marriage. This may be affirmed by “Both groups of settlers-those who honored pioneers married to and those who criticized "squaw men"-phrased their arguments in the rhetoric of White male property rights and citizenship privileges.” (Pascoe, 2009 P. 98) The United States is a destiny to many visitors. Some of the visitors spend a given period of time in the country while others seek permanent citizenship in the nation. This means that once an individual is given the citizenship of the country he or she can get married to a spouse in the country. However, an application for citizenship may be made after the individuals getting married.
Pascoe, Peggy. What comes naturally: miscegenation law and the making of race in America. SEXUALIZING MISCEGENATION LAW ed. Oxford, England: Oxford University Press, 2009. Print.
Pascoe, Peggy. What comes naturally: miscegenation law and the making of race in America. MISCEGENATION LAW AND RACE CLASSIFICATION, ed. Oxford, England: Oxford University Press, 2009. Print.