Monday, February 15, 2010

Maps: Laws against inter-racial marriage, laws against same sex marriage

The Map Scroll is a wonderful blog all about different maps. Here are two US maps from that blog. The first shows the repeal of laws against anti-miscegenation laws.

The second shows a map of the projected passage of marriage equality laws.

Notice that the South lags behind both movements. The Northeast leads the way. The West is a little different.

The MapScroll blogger writes
it took nearly 200 years between the first state ban on interracial marriage to be lifted (Pennsylvania, in 1780) and the Supreme Court decision that ended such bans once and for all. And the progress was very fitful.....

Are there lessons to be drawn here about the future of same-sex marriage? One would seem to be that progressive change is not inexorable; or if it is, it can still be delayed by quite a lot, as the 1887 to 1948 lacuna in repealing marriage bans shows. And, though the generational divide on gay marriage is really stark, according to polls like this one, which found that 41% of people under 45 support same-sex marriage, as opposed to 18% of people over 65, even young people are only split on the issue, so it would seem wrong to view the inexorable spread of marriage equality as a fait accompli.

Nonetheless, I think there are good reasons to think that an outcome in which same-sex marriage becomes broadly accepted within a generation is likely. ....The taboo on gay relationships is on the way out the door, and I can't help but think that it's only a matter of time before the law reflects this reality.

1 comment:

Want Some Wood said...

Some of these projected dates for when states will legalize gay marriage strike me as a bit optimistic; of course, I hope I'm wrong about that.