March 5 Peace Love Activism

March 5 Peace Love Activism

March 5 Peace Love Activism

Birth Control

American Birth Control Federation

March 5 Peace Love Activism

March 5, 1942: the leaders of the American Birth Control Federation, the leading birth control advocacy and service organization in the U.S., announced on this day, that it was changing its name to the Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA), the name by which it is known today.

The origins of the American Birth Control Federation reached back to November 1, 1921, when Margaret Sanger created the American Birth Control League, the first national birth control organization in the country. It changed its name to the American Birth Control Federation on January 18, 1939.

Adoption of the name “Planned Parenthood” generated some controversy. Margaret Sanger had always insisted on the term “birth control,” and opposed euphemism, which she thought “family planning” was. The leaders who adopted the term “planned parenthood,” in fact, regarded it as a euphemism, believing that “birth control” alienated many people and potential supporters. (see February 1, 1943)
Michael F. Griffin
March 5, 1994: a jury in Pensacola, Fla., convicted anti-abortion activist Michael F. Griffin of first-degree murder in the shooting death of Dr. David Gunn; Griffin was sentenced to life in prison. (see Dec 30)


Lena Baker

March 5 Peace Love Activism

March 5, 1945: Georgia executed Lena Baker at the Georgia State Prison in Reidsyille. Baker was an African American mother of three.

She was convicted for the fatal shooting of E. B. Knight, a white Cuthbert, GA mill operator she was hired to care for after he broke his leg. She was 44 and the only woman ever executed in Georgia’s electric chair. For Baker, a Black maid in the segregated south in the 1940’s, her story was a tough sell to a jury of 12 white men. And rumors that she was romantically involved with victim E. B. Knight did not help.

Her murder trial lasted just a day, without a single witness called by her court-appointed lawyer. She was convicted and sentenced to death. John Cole Vodicka, director of an Americus-based inmate advocacy program known as the Prison and Jail Project, said Knight had kept Ms. Baker as his "virtual sex slave." She was his paramour, she was his mistress, and, among other things, his drinking partner. If you read the transcript and have any understanding of black-white relations, Black women were often subjected to the sexual whims of their white masters, their white bosses, or some white man who had control over their lives or the lives of their families. "Here is one who resisted and paid the price.”

The undertaker who brought her body back to Cuthbert buried her in a grave that went unmarked for five decades, until the congregation of Mount Vernon Baptist Church raised money for a concrete slab and marker. 

March 5 Peace Love Activism

Lena Baker, who had a sixth-grade education, stated publicly her innocence to the very end. “What I done, I did in self-defense," she said in her final statement. "I have nothing against anyone. I am ready to meet my God.” 

On August 25, 2005 the State of Georgia granted Lena Baker a pardon On August. 30, 2005, Georgia authorities presented a proclamation to her descendants, including her grandnephew Roosevelt Curry, who led the drive to clear her name. (see Sept 9) (BH, see Sept 18; Death Penalty, see January 13, 1947)

Cold War

“Iron Curtain”

March 5 Peace Love Activism

March 5, 1946: Iron Curtain Speech. Former British Prime Minister Winston Churchill delivers his famous "Iron Curtain" speech at Westminster College in Fulton, Missouri. "From Stettin in the Baltic to Trieste in the Adriatic," Churchill declared, "an Iron Curtain has descended across the Continent" of Europe. Many people consider Churchill's "iron curtain speech" the beginning of the Cold War. (see Mar 28)
Josef Stalin

March 5 Peace Love Activism

March 5, 1953,: Soviet Communist leader Josef Stalin died of a stroke. (see Mar 6)
March 5 Peace Love Activism

March 5 Music et al

Elvis Presley
March 5, 1960: Elvis Presley [had begun active duty Mar 24, 1958] officially discharged from the Army. (see Apr 4)
“The Ballad of the Green Beret”
March 5 – April 8, 1966: “The Ballad of the Green Beret” by SSgt Barry Sadler #1 on the Billboard Hot 100. (Vietnam & News Music, see March 12 – April 15)

Herb Albert
March 5 – 11, 1966: Herb Albert’s Going Places is the Billboard #1 album.

Native Americans

National Congress of American Indians

March 5 Peace Love Activism

March 5, 1962: the National Congress of American Indians on this day announced Operation Constitution, an attack on discrimination against Native-Americans. The issues to be addressed included the lack of adequate law enforcement and police brutality on Indian reservations, discrimination in state welfare programs and admissions to state hospitals, among others. Legal support would be provided in test cases. Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy reportedly pledged “full cooperation” with the program. Meanwhile, Senator Sam J. Ervin (D– North Carolina) called for his Judiciary Subcommittee to undertake the first such Congressional investigation into “this most important and all-too-long-neglected area of the law.” (see December 23, 1963)
National Wildlife Federation
March 5, 1965: the National Wildlife Federation passed a resolution on this day to oppose Native-American fishing rights in areas where fishing was not permitted. The resolution was in response to rising activism among Native-Americans, who made the right to fish in their traditional waters one of their early issues. See the “fish-in” protests on March 2, 1964. (see “in October 1966”)

Cultural Milestone

March 5 Peace Love Activism

March 5, 1963: the Hula-Hoop, the toy that became a huge fad across America when it was first marketed by Wham-O in 1958, was patented by the company's co-founder, Arthur "Spud" Melin.  An estimated 25 million Hula-Hoops were sold in its first four months of production alone. (see July 1)

Nuclear/Chemical News

March 5, 1970: forty-three nations ratified a nuclear non-proliferation treaty. (see Dec 18)


March 5 Peace Love Activism

March 5, 1984: Iran accused Iraq of using chemical weapons. (see April 4)

Symbionese Liberation Army

March 5, 1973: Donald DeFreeze, a.k.a. "General Field Marshal Cinque" simply walks away from Soledad State Prison while on work duty in a boiler room outside the perimeter fence. He had been serving 5–15 years for robbing a prostitute. DeFreeze took the name Cinque from the leader of the slave rebellion who took over the slave ship Amistad in 1839. (see July)

Stop and Frisk Policy

March 5, 2013: NYC agreed to pay $14,000 to Jurard St. Hillaire, 21, who claimed he was illegally stopped and frisked. Hillaire found a surveillance video backing his accusation against Officer Leonard Clarke of the 70th Precinct in Flatbush, Brooklyn. The video showed the cop pushing St. Hillaire against a building. A city lawyer to conceded in January that there appeared to be no legal basis for the stop. (see March 14)
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