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Virginia’s arguments in Loving, Shelby concludes, “are almost identical to the assertions made by the State of Utah in support of Utah’s laws prohibiting same-sex marriage. ... Anti-miscegenation laws in Virginia and elsewhere were designed to, and did, deprive a targeted minority of the full measure of human dignity and liberty by denying them the freedom to marry the partner of their choice. Utah’s Amendment 3 achieves the same result.”
So does Virginia’s marriage amendment. That is why the challenge to it could become a reprise of the Loving case — whether its defenders like that or not.
This column originally appeared in the Richmond Times-Dispatch.