April 25 Peace Love Activism

April 25 Peace Love Activism

US Labor History

8-hour workday

April 25 Peace Love Activism

April 25, 1886: The New York Times declared the struggle for an 8-hour workday to be “un-American” and calls public demonstrations for the shorter hours “labor disturbances brought about by foreigners.”  (see May 3)
National Child Labor Committee

April 25 Peace Love Activism

April 25, 1904: the National Child Labor Committee is formed. The NCLC is a private, non-profit organization and incorporated by an Act of Congress in 1907 with the mission of promoting the rights, dignity, well-being and education of children and youth as they relate to work and working. Despite years of enlightened laws and public scrutiny, the work of NCLC's founding visionaries is still relevant and necessary today. (NCLC) (see June 8)
Feminism
April 25, 1978: in the City of Los Angeles Department of Water and Power v. Manhart, the US Supreme Court ruled that employers may not require female employees to make larger contributions to pension plans in order to obtain the same monthly benefits as men. (LH, see Apr 27, F, see June 9)

BLACK HISTORY

Voting Rights
April 25, 1898: in Williams v. Mississippi, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled there was no racial discrimination in Mississippi's 1890 Constitution, which required all voters to pay poll taxes and pass literacy tests. This ruling came despite public discussion by the framers of the state Constitution on how to maintain white supremacy and keep African Americans from voting. Many other Southern states followed Mississippi's lead. (see May 12)
Marcus Garvey
April 25, 1916: Garvey visited W.E.B. Du Bois, the editor of The Crisis, the magazine of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. (BH, see May 15; MG, see May – June, 1916)
Mack Charles Parker

April 25 Peace Love Activism

April 25, 1959: three days before his scheduled trial, Mack Charles Parker, a 23-year-old African American truck driver, was lynched by a hooded mob of white men in Poplarville, Mississippi. Parker had been accused of raping a pregnant white woman and was being held in a local jail. The mob took him from his cell, beat him, took him to a bridge, shot and killed him, then weighed his body down with chains and dumped him in the river. Many people knew the identity of the killers, but the community closed ranks and refused to talk. Echoing the Till case, the FBI would investigate and identify at least 10 men involved, but the U.S. Department of Justice would rule there were no federal grounds to make an arrest and press charges. Two grand juries -- one county and one federal -- adjourned without indictments. (see May 1)
Harlem Riot
April 25, 1968: the Appellate Division ruled that Lieutenant Thomas Gilligan, who fatally shot a 15-year-old James Powell preceding the Harlem riots in 1964, had the legal right to press his claim for more than $5-million in punitive damages against those who had called him a murderer. (BH, see May 3; RR, see May 27)
US Labor History
April 25, 1969: South Carolina Governor Robert Evander McNairhe declared a state of emergency in Charleston and ordered more than 100,000 state troopers and members of the National Guard to break a strike by predominantly African American Medical University Hospital workers seeking recognition for their union, Local 1199B of the Retail Drug and Hospital Employees. In the end, the employer promised to rehire the striking workers they had fired, abide by a newly established grievance process, and provide modest pay increases. (BH, see May 4; LH, see Dec 31)
FREE SPEECH
April 25, 1969:  Black students at West Senior High School in Rockford, Illinois had presented their grievances to school administrators. When the principal took no action on crucial complaints, a more public demonstration of protest was planned. On this date, approximately 200 people—students, their family members, and friends—gathered next to the school grounds of West Senior High School in Rockford, Illinois. Richar Grayned, brother and twin sisters attended the school, was part of the group. The demonstrators marched around on a sidewalk about 100 feet from the school building, which was set back from the street. Many carried signs which summarized the grievances: "Black cheerleaders to cheer too"; "Black history with black teachers"; "Equal rights, Negro counselors." Others, without placards, made the "power to the people" sign with their upraised and clenched fists.

                Grayned was convicted for his part in the demonstration. (BH, see May 10; FS, see May 15, Grayned, see March 31, 1970)
Sean Bell incident

April 25 Peace Love Activism

April 25, 2008: three detectives were found not guilty on all charges in the shooting death of Sean Bell, who died in a hail of 50 police bullets outside a club in Jamaica, Queens. The verdict prompted calls for calm from Mayor Bloomberg, angry promises of protests by those speaking for the Bell family, and expressions of relief by the detectives. (see May 7)

Women’s Health

Margaret Sanger
April 25, 1951: Margaret Sanger managed to secure a tiny grant for researcher Gregory Pincus from Planned Parenthood, and Pincus begins initial work on the use of hormones as a contraceptive at The Worcester Foundation. Pincus sets out to prove his hypothesis that injections of the hormone progesterone will inhibit ovulation and thus prevent pregnancy in his lab animals. (see "in January" 1952)

Technological Milestones

DNA

April 25 Peace Love Activism

April 25, 1953: Cambridge University scientists, James D Watson and Francis Crick, published an article in Nature Magazine explaining the structure of DNA and that DNA was the material that makes up genes which pass hereditary characteristics in all life from one parent to another. They concluded that it consisted of a double helix of two strands coiled around each other and could even be considered the "secret of life". (TM, see Dec 17; DNA, see April 25, 2003)
Hubble Space Telescope

April 25 Peace Love Activism

April 25, 1990:  the $2.5 billion Hubble Space Telescope was deployed in space from the Space Shuttle Discovery into an orbit 381 miles above Earth. It was the first major orbiting observatory, named in honour of American astronomer, Edwin Powell Hubble. (see December 3, 1992)
Human Genome Project

April 25 Peace Love Activism

April 25, 2003: The Human Genome Project to determine the sequence of chemical base pairs which make up DNA of the human genome consisting of 20,000-25,000 genes started in 1990 was published. The project started in the US with James D. Watson who was head of the National Center for Human Genome Research at the National Institutes of Health but over the next 10 years geneticists in China, France, Germany, Japan, and the United Kingdom all worked together on the project helping the project end two years earlier than planned. One of the most important aspects of this research was that it was available to anyone on the Internet and not owned or controlled by any one company or government. (see “in 2006”)

April 25 Music et al

Stu Cook
April 25, 1945: Stuart Alden Cook, bassist for Creedence Clearwater Revival born. 
Stuck on You
April 25 – May 22, 1960: “Stuck on You” by Elvis #1 Billboard Hot 100, his first since his Army discharge and his thirteenth overall. (see August 15, 1960)

Nuclear/Chemical News
April 25, 1962: on the same day that the United States resumed nuclear testing after a 3-year moratorium, Bob Dylan recorded ”Let Me Die in My Footsteps” a song was inspired by the construction of fallout shelters. (Nuclear/Chemical News, see May 6; Dylan, July 9, 1962)

April 25 Peace Love Activism

Vietnam

Gen. William Westmoreland
April 25, 1964: President Lyndon B. Johnson announced that Gen. William Westmoreland would replace Gen. Paul Harkins as head of U.S. Military Assistance Command Vietnam (MACV) as of June 20. (see May 2)

Easter Offensive

April 25 Peace Love Activism

April 25, 1972: North Vietnamese Army close to cutting South Vietnam in two. Hanoi's 320th Division drives 5,000 South Vietnamese troops into retreat and traps about 2,500 others in a border outpost northwest of Kontum in the Central Highlands. This campaign was part of the ongoing North Vietnamese Nguyen Hue Offensive, also known as the "Easter Offensive," which included an invasion by 120,000 North Vietnamese troops. (see April 26)

Falklands War

April 25, 1982: British Royal Marines retake South Georgia. Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher refused to answer questions from the press on the operation, saying: “Just rejoice at that news and congratulate our forces and the marines.” (see Apr 30)

The Cold War

April 25 Peace Love Activism

April 25, 1983: the Soviet Union released a letter that Russian leader Yuri Andropov wrote to Samantha Smith, an American fifth-grader from Manchester, Maine, inviting her to visit his country. Andropov’s letter came in response to a note Smith had sent him in December 1982, asking if the Soviets were planning to start a nuclear war. At the time, the United States and Soviet Union were Cold War enemies.

                Andropov’s letter said that Russian people wanted to “live in peace, to trade and cooperate with all our neighbors on the globe, no matter how close or far away they are, and, certainly, with such a great country as the United States of America.” In response to Smith’s question about whether the Soviet Union wished to prevent nuclear war, Andropov declared, “Yes, Samantha, we in the Soviet Union are endeavoring and doing everything so that there will be no war between our two countries, so that there will be no war at all on earth.” Andropov also complimented Smith, comparing her to the spunky character Becky Thatcher from “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer” by Mark Twain.

                Smith, born June 29, 1972, accepted Andropov’s invitation and flew to the Soviet Union with her parents for a visit. Afterward, she became an international celebrity and peace ambassador, making speeches, writing a book and even landing a role on an American television series. In February 1984, Yuri Andropov died from kidney failure and was succeeded by Konstantin Chernenko. The following year, in August 1985, Samantha Smith died tragically in a plane crash at age 13. (see August 11, 1984)

Iraq War II

April 25, 2007:  Laura Bush stated that “No one suffers more than the President and I do.”  (see June 7)

DEATH PENALTY

April 25, 2012:  Connecticut Democratic Gov. Dannel Malloy signed into law a repeal of the death penalty, making it the fifth state in recent years to abandon capital punishment. Malloy stated it was 'a moment for sober reflection, not celebration.' With the law, which replaced the death penalty with life in prison without the possibility of parole, Connecticut joined 16 other states and the District of Columbia that do not allow capital punishment. The repeal in Connecticut applied only to future sentences, and the 11 men on its death row now still face execution. However some legal experts have said defense attorneys could use the repeal measure to win life sentences for those inmates. (see May 2, 2013)

LGBTQ

April 25, 2012:  Robert Spitzer, MD, apologized to the gay community in Apr. 2012 for a study published in Oct. 2003 that said some people were able to change their sexual orientation. In a letter to Ken Zucker, the editor of Archives of Sexual Behavior (which published the study), Spitzer wrote: "I offered several (unconvincing) reasons why it was reasonable to assume that the subject’s reports of change were credible and not self-deception or outright lying. But the simple fact is that there was no way to determine if the subject’s accounts of change were valid. I believe I owe the gay community an apology for my study making unproven claims of the efficacy of reparative therapy.") (see May 8)

Voting Rights

April 25, 2016: Judge Thomas D. Schroeder of Federal District Court in Winston-Salem upheld Republican-backed changes to election rules, including a voter identification provision, that civil rights groups said unfairly targeted African-Americans and other minorities.

                Schroeder’s ruling upheld the repeal of a provision that allowed people to register and vote on the same day. It also upheld a seven-day reduction in the early-voting period; the end of preregistration, which allowed some people to sign up before their 18th birthdays; and the repeal of a provision that allowed for the counting of ballots cast outside voters’ home precinct.

                It also left intact North Carolina’s voter identification requirement, which legislators softened last year to permit residents to cast ballots, even if they lack the required documentation, if they submit affidavits. (see Apr 26)

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