Family Law Prof Blog

Editor: Margaret Ryznar
Indiana University
Robert H. McKinney School of Law

Friday, October 16, 2009

Interracial Couple Denied Marriage License in Louisiana

I thought I had seen it all in family law.  But this one has still managed to shock me.  The New York Times reports:

A Louisiana justice of the peace said he refused to issue a marriage license to an interracial couple out of concern for any children the couple might have. Keith Bardwell, justice of the peace in Tangipahoa Parish, says it is his experience that most interracial marriages do not last long.

''I'm not a racist. I just don't believe in mixing the races that way,'' Bardwell told the Associated Press on Thursday. ''I have piles and piles of black friends. They come to my home, I marry them, they use my bathroom. I treat them just like everyone else.''

Bardwell said he asks everyone who calls about marriage if they are a mixed race couple. If they are, he does not marry them, he said.

Read the full story here.


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Interesting that that shocks you, as laws every day deny gay marriages because "they don't last long" and similar reasons.

Posted by: Gideon Alper | Oct 18, 2009 8:49:24 PM

Yeah, that (as a rationale for prohibiting same sex marriage) shocks me too.

Posted by: Andi Carroll | Oct 19, 2009 7:42:06 AM

I am not shocked by this. This guy has a genuine belief, that's all. There is nothing wrong in that.

However I suspect that there are a lot of unreported problems in inter-cultural marriages that maybe to impinge on children, as in my case, but it has nothing to do with race. Its simply about different cultural values.

Posted by: JockStone | Nov 2, 2009 6:30:27 AM

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