Only 20% of the population agreed with this landmark Supreme Court case! While today even the thought of whether interracial marriage should be legal sounds obvious, the America of 1967, when it was deemed unconstitutional to bar interracial marriage, was very different from the America of today.
Back when the law was passed racial tensions ran high, much higher than today as thousands gathered all over the country to protest the blatant inequality of the time. And while those in law and government were open to a new, more equal America, most Americans were not. Just four percent of the population approved of interracial marriage in 1958, and while the number grew to 20% by 1968, 4/5ths of the country still dreaded the idea.
In fact, a majority of Americans didn’t approve until 1997! What is even more amazing is the progress that has been made since that time. Today nearly everyone agrees with the change. The most opposition is found among seniors who were raised during a time of increased racial tensions and segregation, yet among the 18-29 year-old group 97% approve.
Today 84% of America approves of the change, and while it still may baffle some that 16% of the country doesn’t, it is mostly seniors, leading statisticians to believe within the next several years acceptance will be just about unanimous. Many expect the same thing to happen with another hot-topic marriage issue today, marriage between two men or two women.