Thursday, October 15, 2009
A Louisiana justice of the peace said he refused to issue a marriage license to an mixed-race 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.
But Bardwell told the Daily Star newspaper that he is not a racist.
“I don’t do interracial marriages because I don’t want to put children in a situation they didn’t bring on themselves. In my heart, I feel the children will later suffer.”
I am all too familiar with judicial activism (think: the 2000 presidential election and the U.S. Supreme Court) but in 2009, but for a judge to refuse to marry a mixed-race couple is not only unusual — it’s illegal.
The ACLU was preparing a letter for the Louisiana Supreme Court which oversees the state justices of the peace, asking them to investigate Bardwell and see if they can remove him from office.