Statistics of interracial dating
Jeter, a Black and Native American woman, and Loving, a White man, fell in love and decided to get married.
They lived in Virginia, one of the states that still banned “miscegenation” – the derogatory term used to describe interracial coupling – so they needed to travel to the District of Columbia to be officially recognized as a couple.
We looked at race in one of our very first posts, and today we’d like to revisit the topic with fresh data.
This article folds in person-to-person interactions, what one individual human being thinks of another.
This is because Whites make up the majority of married people – though their share is decreasing.
White people made up 83% of the married population in 1980 and 65% in 2014, meaning that the nearly 5% increase in the intermarriage rates of Whites accounts for a little over 4% of the overall increase in intermarriages.
Here are the numbers from 2009–2014 — view each graph below to move through time. While we hope to help daters look beyond appearance and connect on a deeper level, there is an evident trend showing that race is a factor for many individuals, and in a consistent way. The biases shown in this data tell us about how individuals in our society factor in race when interacting with other individuals. Anytime you’re meeting someone new for the first time.
And more than 15% were “intermarriages” – marriages between people who don’t identify as the same racial or ethnic group, up from 6.7% in 1980.
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There are also fewer White people – the group that has always been least likely to intermarry.
Once these demographic changes are accounted for, a large portion of the increase in intermarriage rates vanishes.
This next chart displays intermarriage rates across time for the America’s four major racial/ethnic groups for the same period.