Tonight is the HBO premiere of The Loving Story, a documentary about Mildred and Richard Loving, the couple that challenged a Virginia law that forbade interracial marriages. With the ACLU’s representation, the case worked its way up to the Supreme Court, and in 1967, the Court’s unanimous decision struck down that Virginia law and all remaining state bans on interracial marriage. You can watch The Loving Story trailer here.
If you’re in New York, don’t miss the International Center of Photography’s (1133 Avenue of the Americas at 43rd Street) exhibit of 20 photographs of the Loving family taken for Life magazine. "The Loving Story: Photographs by Grey Villet" will be on display through May 6, 2012. Many of these photographs are featured in the HBO documentary; you can see a few of them here in this slideshow.
Also this week, the first hearing under North Carolina's Racial Justice Act will come to a close tomorrow. The ACLU is part of a team of lawyers representing Marcus Robinson, a black defendant convicted and sentenced to death by a jury that may have been tainted by a racially biased jury selection process. Throughout the hearing, counsel and experts have presented damning statistical evidence of race discrimination in jury selection in North Carolina.
The House Judiciary Committee may continue a markup of the Susan B. Anthony and Frederick Douglass Prenatal Non-Discrimination Act this week.
Wednesday, February 15
Criminal Justice: The United States Sentencing Commission will begin a two day hearing to discuss federal sentencing since the Supreme Court decision in United States v. Booker. The hearing will focus on the Sentencing Commission’s proposal to “strengthen” the sentencing guideline system.
National Security: The House Armed Services Committee will hold hearings on the fiscal 2013 National Defense Authorization budget request. Witnesses will include Leon Panetta, Secretary of Defense, and Gen. Martin Dempsey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
Women’s Rights: The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) will hold a public meeting on the subject of pregnancy discrimination and caregiver issues. The ACLU is submitting a statement for the record.
Immigration/Privacy: The Homeland Security Subcommittee of the House Appropriations Committee will hold hearings on proposed fiscal 2013 appropriations for the Department of Homeland Security. Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano will testify.
Thursday, February 16
National Security: The Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee will hold a hearing titled “Securing America’s Future: The Cybersecurity Act of 2012.”
National Security: The House Armed Services Committee will hold hearings on the fiscal 2013 National Defense Authorization budget request. Witnesses will include Secretary of the Navy, Ray Mabus; Chief of Naval operations, Adm. Jonathan Greenert; and Gen. James Amos, commandant, U.S. Marine Corps.
National Security: The Senate Armed Services Committee will hold a full committee hearing on worldwide threats to U.S. national security. Witnesses will include Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper and Director of Defense Intelligence Agency, Army Lt. Gen. Roland Burgess.
Privacy: The Counterterrorism and Intelligence Subcommittee of House Homeland Security Committee will hold a hearing titled "DHS [Department of Homeland Security] Monitoring of Social Networking and Media: Enhancing Intelligence Gathering and Ensuring Privacy."
Civil Rights: The House Education and the Workforce Committee will hold a hearing on No Child Left Behind reauthorization and overhaul legislation that would restructure the federal role in elementary and secondary education.
Thursday, February 16
Reproductive Freedom: The House Oversight Committee will hold a hearing entitled, “Lines Crossed: Separation of Church and State. Has the Obama Administration Trampled on Freedom of Religion and Freedom of Conscience?”
Friday, February 17
Immigrants’ Rights: The ACLU will be in federal district court in Salt Lake City Friday challenging the constitutionality of Utah’s anti-immigrant law.
National Security: House Armed Services Committee will hold hearings on the fiscal 2013 National Defense Authorization budget request. Witnesses include Secretary of the Army, John McHugh and Chief of staff for the Army, Gen. Raymond Odierno.
Voting Rights: Senior Legislative Counsel Deborah J. Vagins will participate in a Congressional Black History Month Briefing on Voting Rights and a National Update on Voter Suppression Tactics in 2012, co-hosted by Reps. Steny Hoyer, John Lewis, and Marcia Fudge.
Immigrants’ Rights: The Homeland Security Subcommittee of the House Appropriations Committee will hold hearings on proposed fiscal 2013 appropriations for Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Assistant secretary of Homeland Security John Morton will testify.