Tag Archives: April 5 Peace Love Activism

April 5 Peace Love Activism

April 5 Peace Love Activism

BLACK HISTORY

Peons
April 5, 1921: although the 13th Amendment to the Constitution abolished slavery, African Americans continued to be held as de facto slaves in systems of peonage, a form of debt bondage. “Peons” or indentured servants owed money to their “masters” and were forced to work off their debt, a process that took years. A federal law passed in 1867 prohibited peonage but the practice continued for decades throughout the South. It was notoriously difficult to prosecute those who violated the federal law and those who were prosecuted were often acquitted by sympathetic juries.

Fear of a peonage prosecution led to a brutal spree of murders in rural Georgia in 1921. John Williams, a local white plantation owner, held blacks on his farm against their will in horrific, slavery-like conditions. After federal investigators suspected that Williams was violating the peonage law, Williams decided to get rid of the “evidence” of his crime by killing eleven black men whom he had been working as peons. Williams’s trial began on April 5, 1921, and four days later he was convicted of murder and sentenced to life imprisonment. He died in prison several years later.

Following the murders by Williams and other local atrocities against black people, Georgia Governor Hugh Dorsey in 1921 released a pamphlet entitled “A Statement from Governor Hugh M. Dorsey as to the Negro in Georgia.” Dorsey had collected 135 cases of mistreatment of blacks in the previous two years, including lynchings, extensive peonage, and general hostility. Dorsey recommended several remedies, including compulsory education for both races; a state commission to investigate lynchings; and penalties for counties where lynchings occurred. Reflecting on the mob violence that had become common throughout the South, Dorsey wrote, “To me it seems that we stand indicted as a people before the world.”

In response, several officials denied the charges contained in the pamphlet and many Georgians called for Dorsey’s impeachment. (see May 31 and June 1)
Trayvon Martin Shooting
April 5, 2013:  Trayvon Martin’s parents settled a wrongful death claim with the homeowners association of the Retreat at Twin Lakes, the Florida housing complex where their son was shot and killed by neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman. The undisclosed sum was believed to be more than $1 million. (see April 14)

FREE SPEECH

H.L. Mencken

April 5 Peace Love Activism

April 5, 1926: in an incident orchestrated himself, journalist H.L. Mencken was arrested for publishing “Hatrack,” a chapter from a book, Up From Methodism, by Herbert Asbury, in the April issue of his magazine, The American Mercury. His intention was to challenge postal obscenity laws. At trial, he was quickly acquitted. (see April 30, 1927)
Kelley v Johnson
April 5, 1976: The US Supreme Court decided in Kelley v Johnson that personal appearance of police officers is not a protected right of privacy as long as the regulations are rational and there is no substantial claim of infringement on the individual’s freedom of choice with respect to certain basic matters of procreation, marriage, and family life.

Justice Marshall dissented: By taking over appearance, the state forces the officer to sacrifice elements of his identity.  This liberty of appearance is on par with other protected interests like privacy, self-identity, autonomy and personal integrity.  Further, there is no rational relationship between the ends means (how does appearance have to do with esprit de corps?)  (see May 24)

McCarthyism

Roy Cohn and G. David Schine
April 5, 1953: Senator Joe McCarthy’s chief aides, Roy Cohn and G. David Schine, arrived in Germany with plans to remove allegedly “pro-Communist” materials from U.S. information libraries in Europe. Schine claimed there was “too much pro-Communist periodicals and books” and too little anti-Communist materials in the libraries. Their tour turned into a circus that embarrassed the U.S. and alienated Western Europeans. The works of a number of noted American authors were removed from the libraries in the process. Senator McCarthy later claimed there were “30,000 Communist books” in the libraries. A survey by The New York Times found that several hundred books by more than 40 authors were eventually removed. (RS, see Apr 13; FS, see April 21, 1954)

Calvin Graham

April 5, 1943: Graham’s enlistment was cancelled. Since his enlistment was considered void he was paid no accrued pay and allowances and no travel allowances. His enlistment was considered void, he was given no credit for the military service (including the more than 4 months foreign service) and no mustering out pay.(see Calvin Graham for full story)

April 5 Music et al

The Cavern Club
April 5, 1962: The Beatles performed at The Cavern Club in Liverpool as part of a special night presented by the Beatles' fan club. The Beatles wear their black leather outfits for the first half of the performance, for old time's sake, then change into their new suits for the second half of the show. (see Apr 8)
Jerry Lee Lewis

April 5 Peace Love Activism

April 5, 1964, Jerry Lee Lewis played and recorded the famous Live at the Star Club in Hamburg, Germany. (see Live at the Star Club for more)
My Fair Lady

April 5 Peace Love Activism

April 5, 1964 Oscars held. Bob Hope hosted. The Best Picture winner My Fair Lady
Vietnam, BLACK HISTORY & Muhammad Ali
April 5, 1967:  Monkees fans walked from London's Marble Arch to the US Embassy in Grosvenor Square to protest Davy Jones' planned call-up. Jones was exempted because he was deemed responsible for supporting his father. (Vietnam, see Apr 10; BH, see Apr 10; Ali, see Apr 17)
Fear of Rock
April 5, 1983: Interior Secretary James Watt banned the Beach Boys from the 4th of July celebration on the Washington Mall, saying rock 'n' roll bands attract the "wrong element." (Rock, see January 23, 1986; FoR, see May 7, 1991)
Beat Generation

April 5 Peace Love Activism

April 5, 1997: Allen Ginsberg died. (see Aug 2) (NYT article/obit)

Vietnam

Daniel Ellsberg/Pentagon Papers 
April 5 – 7, 1973: top Nixon aide John Ehrlichman secretly met twice with Judge Matthew Byrne, who was presiding over the Russo/Ellsberg trial, and offered him a job as the new director of the F.B.I.(Daniel Ellsberg/Pentagon Papers)

ADA

Judy Heumann

April 5 Peace Love Activism

April 5, 1977: demonstrators led by Judy Heumann (see “in 1970” and September 28, 1987) took over the Health Education and Welfare (HEW) office in UN Plaza, San Francisco, California, in protest of HEW Secretary Califano's refusal to complete regulations for Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, which made it illegal for federal agencies, public universities, and other public institutions receiving any federal funds to discriminate on the basis of disability. Califano issued the regulations three weeks later. (see April 28)
April 5 Peace Love Activism

Falklands War

April 5, 1982: British task force of more than 100 ships set sail for Falklands, including aircraft carriers HMS Hermes and HMS Invincible. Lord Carrington, the Foreign Secretary, resigned over the invasion. Francis Pym replaced him. (see Apr 25)

Feminism & Women’s Health

March for Women’s Lives

April 5 Peace Love Activism

April 5, 1992: the March for Women’s Lives, organized by the National Organization for Women (NOW; founded on June 30, 1966), brought approximately 750,000 people to Washington, D.C., on this day. One of the largest protest marches on the nation’s capital, the pro-choice rally came as the Supreme Court was about to consider the constitutionality of Casey v. Planned Parenthood (see June 29)

TERRORISM

Pan Am flight 103
April 5, 1999: two Libyans suspected of bringing down Pan Am flight 103 in 1988 were handed over to Scottish authorities for eventual trial in the Netherlands. (see October 12, 2000)
Ahmed Ressam

April 5 Peace Love Activism

April 5, 2001:, Algerian national Ahmed Ressam, accused of bringing explosives into the United States days before the millennium celebrations, was convicted on terror charges. (see May 29)
Laurence Foley
April 5, 2004: Jordan's military court convicted eight Muslim militants and sentenced them to death for the 2002 killing of U.S. aid official Laurence Foley in a terror conspiracy linked to al-Qaida. (see Dec 6)

LGBTQ

Matthew Shepard murder
April 5, 1999: Russell Henderson pleads guilty and agrees to testify against Aaron McKinney to avoid the death penalty; Henderson received two consecutive life sentences. The jury in McKinney's trial found him guilty of felony murder. As they began to deliberate on the death penalty, Shepard's parents brokered a deal, resulting in McKinney receiving two consecutive life terms without the possibility of parole. (see September 27, 2007)
Mississippi
April 5, 2016: Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant signed a controversial bill into law that could allow businesses and government workers to deny services to lesbian and gay couples.

Bryant said in a statement that he was signing HB 1523 “to protect sincerely held religious beliefs and moral convictions of individuals, organizations and private associations from discriminatory action by state government or its political subdivisions.” (see April 19)

US Labor History

Upper Big Branch Mine

April 5 Peace Love Activism

April 5, 2010: a huge underground explosion at the Upper Big Branch Mine in Montcoal, W. Va., killed 29 miners. It was the worst U.S. mine disaster in 40 years. The Massey Energy Co. mine had been cited for two safety infractions the day before the blast; 57 the month before, and 1,342 in the previous five years. Three and one-half years after the disaster Massey’s then-CEO, Don Blankenship, was indicted by a federal grand jury on four criminal counts -. (see “2010 at end of this year")

SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE

Capt. Singh

April 5 Peace Love Activism

April 5, 2016: the Army granted Capt Simratpal Singh, a Sikh, permission to serve while wearing a turban over his long hair and a beard with his uniform. He was the first active duty soldier to seek the accommodation and receive it while serving in the Army, according to The Sikh Coalition, the largest Sikh American advocacy organization in the United States. (see Aug 4)

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