August 14 Peace Love Activism
August 14, 1908: a race riot broke out in the Illinois capital of Springfield. Angry over reports that a black man had sexually assaulted a white woman, a white mob wanted to take a recently arrested suspect from the city jail and kill him. They also wanted Joe James, an out-of-town black who was accused of killing a white railroad engineer, Clergy Ballard, a month earlier.
Late that afternoon, a crowd gathered in front of the jail in the city's downtown and demanded that the police hand over the two men to them. But the police had secretly taken the prisoners out the back door into a waiting automobile and out of town to safety. When the crowd discovered that the prisoners were gone, they rioted. First they attacked and destroyed a restaurant owned by a wealthy white citizen, Harry Loper, who had provided the automobile that the sheriff used to get the two men out of harm's way. The crowd completed its work by setting fire to the automobile, which was parked in front of the restaurant.
The rioters next methodically destroyed a small black business district downtown, breaking windows and doors, stealing or destroying merchandise, and wrecking furniture and equipment. The mob's third and last effort that night was to destroy a nearby poor black neighborhood called the Badlands. Most blacks had fled the city, but as the mob swept through the area, they captured and lynched a black barber, Scott Burton, who had stayed behind to protect his home. (see Aug 15)
Dyer Anti-Lynching bill
August 14, 1922: a delegation of Black women met with President Harding to urge final Congressional action on the Dyer Anti-Lynching bill. He expressed doubt about the bill’s passage. (see Sept 24)
Feminism & Voting Rights
“Kaiser Wilson” banner
August 14, 1917: pickets carry new banner–famous “Kaiser Wilson” banner, comparing President Wilson to German emperor Kaiser Wilhelm II. Banner accuses Wilson of being autocrat over women lacking a voice in government. Angry mob attacks pickets, destroys banners, and fires gun at National Women’s Party headquarters. Police do little to intervene. (see August 17)
Lafayette Park demonstration
August 14, 1918: two more suffrage demonstrations held in Lafayette Park, Washington, D.C. Thirty women arrested and released; return that evening to protest and are rearrested. (see Aug 15)
August 14, 1935: President Franklin Delano Roosevelt signed the Social Security Act, establishing a program of permanent assistance to adults with disabilities.
In 1939 at the onset of World War II Adolph Hitler ordered widespread "mercy killing" of the sick and disabled. Code-named Aktion T4, the Nazi euthanasia program is instituted to eliminate "life unworthy of life." Between 75,000 to 250,000 people with intellectual or physical disabilities are systematically killed from 1939 to 1941.
In 1941, John F. Kennedy's twenty-three year old sister Rosemary underwent a prefrontal lobotomy as a "cure" for lifelong mild retardation and aggressive behavior that surfaced in late adolescence. The operation fails, resulting in total incapacity. To avoid scandal, Rosemary was moved permanently to the St. Coletta School for Exceptional Children in Wisconsin.
In the 1950s, disabled veterans and people with disabilities begin the barrier-free movement. The combined efforts of the Veterans Administration, The President's Committee on Employment of the Handicapped, and the National Easter Seals Society, among others, results in the development of national standards for "barrier-free" buildings.
Association for Retarded Citizens
In 1950, parents of youth diagnosed with mental retardation found the Association for Retarded Citizens (ARC). The association works to change the public's ideas about mental retardation. Its members educate parents and others, demonstrating that individuals with mental retardation have the ability to succeed in life. (ARC, see December 31, 1998)
Dr. Howard A. Rusk
In 1948 Dr. Howard A. Rusk founded the Rusk Institute of Rehabilitation Medicine in New York City, where he developed techniques to improve the health of injured veterans from World War II. His theory focused on treating the emotional, psychological and social aspects of individuals with disabilities and later became the basis for modern rehabilitation medicine.
In 1953 Clemens Benda, clinical director at the Fernald School in Waltham, Massachusetts, an institution for boys with mental retardation, invites 100 teenage students to participate in a "science club" in which they will be privy to special outings and extra snacks. In a letter requesting parental consent, Benda mentions an experiment in which "blood samples are taken after a special breakfast meal containing a certain amount of calcium," but makes no mention of the inclusion of radioactive substances that are fed to the boys in their oatmeal. (Benda, see October 17, 1995)
American Standards Association
In 1961 the American Standards Association, later known as the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), publishes the first accessibility standard titled, Making Buildings Accessible to and Usable by the Physically Handicapped. Forty-nine states adapt accessibility legislation by 1973.
In 1962 Ed Roberts, a student with polio, enrolled at the University of California, Berkele, but later his admission was rejected. He fought to get the decision overturned. He became the father of the Independent Living Movement and helped establish the first Center for Independent Living (CIL). He earned B.A. (1964) and M.A. (1966) degrees from UC Berkeley in Political Science. Roberts died on March 14, 1995, at the age of 56. (see October 31, 1963)
August 14, 1936: at 5:45 AM, Rainey Bethea became the last person to be publicly executed in the US. Bethea was hanged for raping and murdering a 70-year-old woman in Owensboro, Kentucky. The execution garnered significant media and public attention because it was the first hanging in the US to be conducted by a woman. At least 20,000 people witnessed Bethea's hanging, which reporters called the "carnival in Owensboro." Several scholars believe Bethea's execution was an important contributor to the eventual ban on public executions in America. (see June 16, 1944)
August 14, 1947: Pakistan independent from the United Kingdom. (see August 15)
August 14 Music et al
Pete Best fired
August 14, 1962: The Beatles and their manager Brian Epstein decided to fire Pete Best. Best played his last gig the following night at The Cavern, Liverpool. Ringo Starr, who was nearing the end of a three-month engagement with Rory Storm and the Hurricanes at a Butlin's holiday camp, received a telephone call from John Lennon, asking him to join The Beatles. Ringo gave Rory Storm three days notice A series of drummers would become part of Rory Storm’s band including Keef Hartley. (Beatles, see Aug 18)
Beatles last live Ed Sullivan appearance
August 14, 1965, The Beatles: appeared live on the Ed Sullivan Show for the last time. [I Feel Fine > I’m Down > Act Naturally (see Aug 15; see Sept 12)
“I Got You Babe”
August 14 – September 3, 1965: “I Got You Babe” by Sonny and Cher #1 on the Billboard Hot 100.
The [bumpy] Road to Bethel
Thursday 14 August 1969
- NY State Police continue to randomly stop and frisk young drivers at Harriman interchange. 150 arrests made.
- Bill Handley’s sound system erected. “According to one expert’s cumulative eye, the hi-fi equipment in the bowl represented the most expensive sound system ever assembled at one time in any given location.”
- Bill Abruzzi, doctor hired to take care of medical issues at the festival, told festival to triple his supply order.
- although warned not to, about 270 NYC police show up but insist on being paid in cash without receipts. They work using aliases and were paid more than the agreed amount.
- Food For Love demanded all profits after repaying the initial $75,00 fee. Woodstock Ventures agreed.
- film deal reached: 50% split. Warner Brothers and Woodstock Ventures after negative costs. On Friday, Michael Wadleigh signed on as director.
- the Diamond Horseshoe, where nearly 200 Woodstock staff had been staying, caught fire. The fire was extinguished by hotel staff because the fire department couldn’t get through. (see Aug 15 – 18)
August 14 Peace Love Activism
United Farm Workers
August 14, 1973: UFW member, Nagi Daifullah, a 24-year old picket captain of Yemanese descent, died after being struck in the skull by a police flashlight. Alarabiya article (see Aug 17, 1973)
August 14, 1980, Jimmy Carter renominated at the Democratic National Convention in New York City.
August 14 – 17, 2000, the Democratic National Convention in Los Angeles nominated VP Al Gore for President and Sen Joe Lieberman for Vice President.
LGBTQ & BSA
August 14, 2003: a Sebastopol, CA troop lost its Boy Scouts of America charter for refusing to drop an anti-discrimination statement that Scouting officials said conflicts with the organization's national policy banning homosexuals. Bev Buswell, led adviser to the 16-member Venture Crew 488, said her application for charter renewal was denied because it included a statement she wrote pledging the crew would not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, sexual orientation and other factors. (LGBTQ, see Nov 18; BSA, see March 30, 2005)
Stop and Frisk Policy
August 14, 2009: The New York Civil Liberties Union said the NYPD was on pace to break last year's record for stop and frisk encounters. In the first half of 2009, the NYPD made 311,000 stops. (see Sept, 2009)
August 14, 2015: U.S. District Myron Thompson blocked an Alabama abortion regulation that would have permanently closed the state's busiest abortion clinic. Thompson said that the rule was unnecessary to protect women.
Thompson had issued a temporary restraining order blocking the regulation the previous week, saying that the closure of the West Alabama Women's Center in Tuscaloosa would prevent women from obtaining abortions. He followed up the order with an 81-page opinion issued on this date.
The 2007 health regulation requires clinics to hire a physician with hospital-admitting privileges to handle patient complications. The clinic filed a lawsuit challenging it.
The clinic was one of five abortion providers in Alabama, but performed about 40 percent of the state's abortions in 2013, according to court records. It was also one of two clinics that provide abortions in the middle of the second trimester.
"For all Alabama women, the closure of the largest abortion provider in the state, one of two providers in the state that administers abortions after 16 weeks, has reduced the number of abortions that can be provided here. Finally, and as chillingly recounted above, closing the Center has increased the risk that women will take their abortion into their own hands," Thompson wrote. (see Aug 24)
The Cold War
August 14, 2015: Secretary of State John Kerry traveled to Cuba and raised the American flag above the U.S. Embassy for the first time in 54 years. "Thank you for joining us at this truly historic moment as we prepare to raise the flag ... symbolizing the restoration of diplomatic relations after 54 years," Kerry said at the ceremony, addressing the crowd in both English and Spanish. (CW, see February 16, 2016; Cuba, see February 16, 2016)
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