Category Archives: Today in history

October 10 Peace Love Activism

October 10 Peace Love Activism

BLACK HISTORY

Slave Celia
October 10, 1855: an investigation into Robert Newsom’s disappearance led authorities to question Celia until she admitted to the act. Missouri law at the time allowed a woman who believed she was in “imminent danger of forced sexual intercourse” to be acquitted on a self-defense theory. However, the judge in Celia’s case did not give such an instruction to the jury because, in his view, she was a slave with no right to refuse her “master.”

The jury convicted Celia of first degree murder on October 10, 1855. (see Slave Celia for full story; BH, see "In May" 1856)
Octavius Catto

October 10 Peace Love Activism

October 10, 1871: Frank Kelly assassinated Octavius Catto, a 32-year-old educator and civil rights activist, during an election day uprising in Philadelphia. Kelly, was never tried for murder. Catto’s headstone remembers him as “the forgotten hero.” (see Oct 12)
Autherine Lucy
October 10 Peace Love Activism
Autherine Lucy
October 10, 1955: in Lucy et al v ADAMS, Dean of Admissions, University of Alabama, the Supreme Court upheld the lower court’s decision to admit Autherine Lucy and Pollie Ann Meyers. Chief Justice Earl Warren wrote for the majority, The injunction which the District Court issued in this case, but suspended pending appeal to the Court of Appeals, is reinstated to the extent that it enjoins and restrains the respondent and others designated from denying these petitioners, solely on account of their race or color, the right to enroll in the University of Alabama and pursue courses of study there. The motion is denied. (BH, see Oct 19; U of A, see Feb 2, 1956)
Lurleen B. Wallace Award

 

October 10, 1996: former Alabama Governor Wallace presented the Lurleen B. Wallace Award for Courage, named for his late wife, to Autherine Lucy. He told her that he made a mistake 33 years earlier and that he admired her. They discussed forgiveness.(CNN story) (BH, see May 16, 1997; U of A, see May 19, 1997)
Komla Agbeli Gbedemah
October 10, 1957: in the conclusion to an extremely embarrassing situation, President Dwight D. Eisenhower offered his apologies to Ghanian Finance Minister, Komla Agbeli Gbedemah, who had been refused service at a restaurant in Dover, Delaware. It was one of the first of many such incidents in which African diplomats were confronted with racial segregation in the United States.  (NYT article) (see Feb 20)
MARTIN LUTHER KING
October 10, 1963: at the request of FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover, U.S. Attorney General Robert Kennedy authorized the FBI to wiretap the telephones of Martin Luther King Jr. Hoover hoped to prove King was under the influence of the Communist Party but failed. (BH, see Oct 11; MLK, see Oct 15)
Duluth, MN lynching

October 10 Peace Love Activism

October 10, 2003: the June 15, 1920 Duluth, MN lynching was commemorated by dedicating a plaza including three seven-foot-tall bronze statues to the three men who were killed. The statues were part of a memorial across the street from the site of the lynchings. The Clayton Jackson McGhie Memorial was designed and sculpted by Carla J. Stetson, in collaboration with editor and writer Anthony Peyton-Porter.October 10 Peace Love Activism
At the memorial's opening, thousands of citizens from Duluth and surrounding communities gathered for a ceremony. The final speaker at the ceremony was Warren Read, the great-grandson of one of the most prominent leaders of the lynch mob:

It was a long held family secret, and its deeply buried shame was brought to the surface and unraveled. We will never know the destinies and legacies these men would have chosen for themselves if they had been allowed to make that choice. But I know this: their existence, however brief and cruelly interrupted, is forever woven into the fabric of my own life. My son will continue to be raised in an environment of tolerance, understanding and humility, now with even more pertinence than before." (see April 22, 2004)
Medgar Evers

October 10 Peace Love Activism

October 10, 2009: Myrlie Evers-Williams, the widow of the slain civil rights pioneer Medgar Evers, heard Navy Secretary Ray Mabus, a former Mississippi governor, announce that he was naming a new Navy supply ship for her husband. She said: “I think of those who will serve on this ship and those who will see it in different parts of the world. And perhaps they, too, will come to know who Medgar Evers was and what he stood for.” (see Oct 28)
BLACK & SHOT
October 10, 2017: according to their lawyer, Officers Garrett E. Miller and Edward M. Nero, the two police officers involved in the fatal arrest of Freddie Gray (see April 19, 2015) agreed to face modest internal discipline, bringing an end to the proceedings against them two and a half years after Gray’s death in police custody prompted violent protests in Baltimore and fueled a national debate over the way the police treat minorities.

According to Michael Davey, a lawyer for their police union, Miller and Nero agreed to face “minor disciplinary action. Davey did not specify their punishment nor the allegations they faced. He said the move ensures they can “continue their careers with the Baltimore Police Department.”

October 19 Music et al

Sonny Rollins
In 1958: Sonny Rollins released Freedom Suite in, although his record company changed the name to Shadow Waltz. In its liner notes, Rollins wrote, “How ironic that the Negro, who more than any other people can claim America’s culture as his own, is being persecuted and repressed.” (see Feb 20)
 
Larry Verne
October 10 Peace Love ActivismOctober 10 – 16, 1960: “Mr. Custer” by Larry Verne #1 Billboard Hot 100.

October 10, 1966, Teenage Culture: the Monkees released  their first album, The Monkees. (see Nov 12)

October 10 Peace Love Activism

INDEPENDENCE DAY

October 10, 1970: Fiji independent of the United Kingdom (see March 26, 1971)

LGTBQ

see Baker v Nelson for more

October 10 Peace Love Activism

October 10, 1972: The U.S. Supreme Court dismissed Baker v. Nelson, one of three cases brought by same-sex couples. challenging the denial of marriage. A Minnesota couple, Richard Baker and James Michael McConnell, were denied a marriage license by the Hennepin County District Court's clerk on May 18, 1970. Their initial trial court dismissed their claim and affirmed that the clerk could refuse gay couples a marriage license. (NYT article) (see January 1, 1973) 
Kerrigan v. Commissioner of Public Health
October 10, 2008, LGBTQ: The Connecticut Supreme Court ruled in Kerrigan v. Commissioner of Public Health, a case brought by Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders, that same-sex couples were entitled to the freedom to marry. The law retroactively takes effect on October 1, allowing all couples the freedom to marry and converting existing civil unions between same-sex couples in the state into marriages.  (see Nov 4)
Idaho
October 10, 2014: the Supreme Court allowed same-sex marriages to proceed in Idaho, lifting a temporary stay issued two days earlier by Justice Anthony M. Kennedy. (LGBTQ, see Oct 12; Nevada LGBTQ, see January 9, 2015)

Watergate Scandal

October 10, 1972: the Washington Post reported that FBI agents had established that the Watergate break-in stemmed from a massive campaign of political spying and sabotage conducted on behalf of the Nixon reelection effort. (see Nov 7)

VP Agnew Scandal

October 10, 1973: Spiro Agnew resigned the vice presidency and appeared in US District Court in Baltimore on the same day to plead nolo contendere to a single federal count of failing to report on his income-tax return $29,500 in income. (NYT article) (see Dec 6)

WAR POWERS ACT

October 10, 1973: Senate approved joint conference committee’s resolution 75 – 20. (see Oct 12)

Sexual Abuse of Children

Sinead O’Connor
October 10, 1992: Sinead O'Connor appeared on Saturday Night Live as a musical guest. She sang an a cappella version of Bob Marley's "War", which she intended as a protest over the sexual abuse in the Roman Catholic Church, by changing the lyric "racism" to "child abuse." She then presented a photo of Pope John Paul II to the camera while singing the word "evil", after which she tore the photo into pieces, said "Fight the real enemy", and threw the pieces towards the camera.  (NYT article) (see “In November”)

Jason BerryOctober 10 Peace Love Activism
In 1992: Jason Berry's Lead Us Not Into Temptation: Catholic Priests and the Sexual Abuse of Children published. In Rev. Andrew M. Greeley's foreword, he describes its content as revealing "what may be the greatest scandal in the history of religion in America and perhaps the most serious crisis Catholicism has faced since the Reformation" (see “In July”)

Native Americans

October 10, 2013: in an emotional statement Dusten Brown, Baby Veronica's biological father, said he and the Cherokee Nation were dropping the legal fight to regain custody of the 4-year-old girl.

 "I know we did everything in our power to keep Veronica home with her family," Brown said in Oklahoma. "Veronica is only 4 years old, but her entire life has been lived in front of the media and the entire world. I cannot bear for [it to continue] any longer.... I love her too much to continue to have her in the spotlight. It is not fair for her to be in front of media at all times," he said. "It was the love for my daughter that finally gave me the strength to accept things that are beyond my control." (see Nov 21)

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October 9 Peace Love Activism

October 9 Peace Love Activism

SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE
October 9 Peace Love Activism
Roger Williams
October 9, 1635:  religious dissident Roger Williams was banished from the Massachusetts Bay Colony by the General Court of Massachusetts. Williams had spoken out against the right of civil authorities to punish religious dissension and to confiscate Indian land. (see March 22, 1638)

Feminism

World Woman’s Party
October 9, 1938: at National Women’s Party convention Detroit, the NWP established the World Woman’s Party, headquartered in Geneva; initiated fund-raising scheme to sell equal rights seals–similar to Easter seals; restructured NWP hierarchy. (see July 22. 1939)
Malala Yousafzai

October 9 Peace Love Activism

October 9, 2012: a Taliban gunman shot and seriously wounded Malala Yousafzai  a 14-year-old schoolgirl and activist in the Swat Valley in northwestern Pakistan, singling out a widely known champion of girls’ education and a potent symbol of resistance to militant ideology. (NYT article)(see Oct 15)

Technological Milestone

October 9, 1951: RCA demonstrated its "all-electronic" color system for the first time on October 9th, 1951. The test was also broadcast on WNBT, and because RCA's system was compatible with existing black and white television sets, viewers were able to watch the demonstration (in black and white, of course) (see Oct 25)

October 9 Music et al

Ray Charles

October 9 Peace Love Activism

October 9 – 22, 1961: “Hit the Road Jack” by Ray Charles #1 Billboard Hot 100.

 

Yesterday

October 9 Peace Love Activism

October 9 – November 5, 1965, The Beatles: “Yesterday” #1 on the Billboard Hot 100. (see Oct 26)

October 9 Peace Love Activism

Che Guevara

October 9 Peace Love ActivismOctober 9, 1967: after capturing Che Guevara the day before, Bolivian President René Barrientos ordered Guevara executed but made to look like Guevara had died in battle.

Native Americans

October 9, 1969: the American Indian Center in San Francisco burned down. It had been a meeting place that served 30,000 Indian people with social programs. The loss of the center focuses Indian attention on taking over Alcatraz for use as a new facility. (see Nov 9, 1969)

Japanese Internment Camps

October 9, 1990: On August 10, 1988, President Reagan had signed the Civil Liberties Act of 1988. It had provided for a Presidential apology and appropriates $1.25 billion for reparations of $20,000 to most Japanese internees, evacuees, and others of Japanese ancestry who lost liberty or property because of discriminatory wartime actions by the government. Civil Liberties Public Education Fund created to help teach the public about the internment period. On this date at a Washington, D.C. ceremony, the first payments were issued.  107-year-old Reverend Mamoru Eto was the first to receive his check. (see May 21, 1999)

Nobel Peace Prize

October 9 Peace Love Activism

October 9, 2009: President Obama unexpectedly wins the Nobel Peace Prize.

STAND YOUR GROUND LAW

October 9, 2012: Kalispell, Montana. County attorney Ed Corrigan decided not to prosecute Brice Harper for the killing of Dan Fredenberg, saying that Montana’s “castle doctrine” law, which maintains that a man’s home is his castle, protected Harper’s rights to vigorously defend himself there. Corrigan decided that Mr. Harper had the right to fetch his gun from his bedroom, confront Mr. Fredenberg in the garage and, fearing for his safety, shoot him. “Given his reasonable belief that he was about to be assaulted, Brice’s use of deadly force against Dan was justified.” [text of Corrigan’s entire statement](see Dec 26)

Voting Rights

October 9, 2014: the U.S. Supreme Court blocked Wisconsin from implementing a law requiring voters to present photo IDs, overturning a lower court decision that would have put the law in place for the November election.

The 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals had declared the law constitutional. (see Oct 15)

Environmental Issues

October 9, 2017: the Trump administration announced that it would take formal steps to repeal President Barack Obama’s signature policy to curb greenhouse gas emissions from power plants, setting up a bitter fight over the future of America’s efforts to tackle global warming.

At an event in eastern Kentucky, Scott Pruitt, the head of the Environmental Protection Agency, said that his predecessors had departed from regulatory norms in crafting the Clean Power Plan, which was finalized in 2015 and would have pushed states to move away from coal in favor of sources of electricity that produce fewer carbon emissions.

"The war on coal is over,” Mr. Pruitt said. “Tomorrow in Washington, D.C., I will be signing a proposed rule to roll back the Clean Power Plan. No better place to make that announcement than Hazard, Ky.”

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October 8 Peace Love Activism

October 8 Peace Love Activism

October 8 Music et al

Sam CookeOctober 8 Peace Love Activism,  
October 8, 1963, BLACK HISTORY, Bob Dylan & News Music: after hearing Bob Dylan's "Blowin' in the Wind"  earlier in the year, Sam Cooke was greatly moved that such a poignant song about racism in America could come from someone who was not black. While on tour in May and after speaking with sit-in demonstrators in Durham, North Carolina following a concert, Cooke returned to his tour bus and wrote the first draft of what would become "A Change Is Gonna Come". The song also reflected much of Cooke's own inner turmoil. Known for his polished image and light-hearted songs such as "You Send Me" and "Twistin' the Night Away", he had long felt the need to address the situation of discrimination and racism. However, his image and fears of losing his largely white fan base prevented him from doing so.

A Change Is Gonna’ Come,” very much a departure for Cooke, reflected two major incidents in his life. The first was the death of Cooke's 18-month-old son, Vincent, who died of an accidental drowning in June of that year. The second major incident came this date when Cooke and his band tried to register at a "whites only" motel in Shreveport, Louisiana and were summarily arrested for disturbing the peace. Both incidents are represented in the weary tone and lyrics of the piece, especially the final verse: There have been times that I thought I couldn't last for long/but now I think I'm able to carry on/It's been a long time coming, but I know a change is gonna come.

Cooke would not record the song until November 1964. (BH, see Oct 10; Cooke, see November 11, 1964; Dylan, see Oct 23
News Music
In 1964 The Impressions with Curtis Mayfield released single “Keep on Pushin’” (see Feb 7)
WOR-FM

October 8 Peace Love Activism,  

October 8, 1966: in New York City, WOR-FM disc jockeys start. (see Jan 1, 1967) NYT WOR-FM article

October 8 Peace Love Activism,  

Cold War

October 8, 1967: Che Guevara, Argentine Marxist revolutionary, physician, author, intellectual, guerrilla leader, diplomat and military theorist, and a major figure of the Cuban Revolution whose stylized visage has become a countercultural symbol of rebellion and global insignia within popular culture was wounded and taken prisoner in Bolivia by CIA-assisted Bolivian forces.

Vietnam & Weather Underground

October 8 - 11, 1969:  the "Days of Rage" riots occur in Chicago, damaging a large amount of property. 287 Weatherman members are arrested, some become fugitives when they fail to appear for trial in connection with their arrests. (see Oct 15)

Native Americans

American Indian Center
October 9, 1969: the American Indian Center in San Francisco burned down. It had been a meeting place that served 30,000 Indian people with social programs. The loss of the center focuses Indian attention on taking over Alcatraz for use as a new facility. (see Nov 9, 1969)
Leonard Peltier
October 8, 2012: Leonard Peltier released a 2012 Indigenous Day Statement which began,

Greetings my relatives and friends, supporters! 

I know I say this same line all the time but in reality you all are my relatives and I appreciate you. I cannot say that enough. Some of our people, as well as ourselves have decided to call today Indigenous Day instead of Columbus Day and it makes me really think about how many People who still celebrate Columbus, a cruel, mass murderer who on his last trip to the Americas, as I have read, was arrested by his own people for being too cruel. When you consider those kinds of cruelty against our People and his status, it makes you wonder to what level he had taken his cruelty. In all of this historical knowledge that is available people still want to celebrate and hold in high esteem this murderer. 

If we were to celebrate Hitler Day, or Mussolini Day, or some other murderer and initiator of violence and genocide, there would be widespread condemnation. It would be like celebrating Bush Day in Iraq. It's kind of sad to say that even mentioning Columbus in my comments gives him more recognition that he should have. So I agree wholeheartedly with all of you out there that have chosen to call this Indigenous Day. If I weren't Native American or as some of have come to say - Indigenous, I would still love our ways and cling to our ways and cherish our ways. I see our ways as the way to the future, for the world. Whereas I, and others, have said over and over, and our People before us: This earth is our Mother. This earth is life. And anything you take from the earth creates a debt that is to be paid back at some time in the future by someone. (full text) (see Oct 22)
October 8 Peace Love Activism

IRAQ

Kuwait withdrawal
October 8, 1994: the UN Security Council said that Iraq must withdraw its troops from the Kuwait border, and immediately cooperate with weapons inspectors. (see Oct 15)

United Farm Workers

Lettuce strike
October 8, 1970: Bud Antle, Inc, which grew about 8% of the Salinas valley lettuce, obtained an injunction prohibiting the farm workers from continuing their strike and boycott until the original case was settled. (see Dec 4, 1970)
Cesar E. Chavez National Monument
October 8, 2012:  President Obama visited Keene, Califorinia to dedicate the Cesar E. Chavez National Monument, the nation's first such site to honor a contemporary Mexican American.

Dissolution of Yugoslavia

October 8, 1991: Croatia independent from Yugoslavia. (Dissolution of Y see Nov 2; ID, see Oct 27)

BLACK HISTORY

see George Whitmore, Jr for the whole long story
October 8, 2012: Whitmore died in a Wildwood, N.J., nursing home. He was 68. In a NY Times Op-Ed article entitled, “Who Will Mourn George Whitmore?” T. J English wrote:

This week, a flawed but beautiful man who offered up his innocence to New York City died with hardly any notice. To those who benefited from his struggles or who believe the city is a fairer place for his having borne them, I ask: Who grieves for George Whitmore?

 In recent months, I’d fallen out of touch with George Whitmore, Jr.. Knowing him, and attempting to assume a measure of responsibility for his life, was often exhausting. While I had come to love him, the drunken phone calls, the calls from hospital emergency rooms and flophouses, and the constant demands for money became overwhelming. When people who claimed to be friends of his starting calling me and asking for favors, I decided to back off. But when I received a cryptic e-mail from one of his nephews, informing me that Whitmore had died on Monday, I was overcome with sadness and regret. NYT article

Sexual Abuse of Children

Boy Scouts of America
October 8, 2012: Timothy Kosnoff, a Seattle attorney, released the names of nearly 1,900 men whom the Boy Scouts of America expelled alleged sexual abuse between 1970 and 1991. Kosnoff has sued the Boy Scouts on behalf of more than 100 alleged victims, identifies many men who have never been reported to police or faced criminal charges.

In addition, Kosnoff released brief summaries of 3,200 other cases of suspected sexual abuse dating to 1948, without naming the alleged perpetrators. (BSA & SAC, see Oct 18)

LGBTQ

October 8, 2014: the day after a federal appeals court struck down same-sex marriage bans in Idaho and in Nevada, implementation of the decision in Idaho was temporarily blocked by Justice Anthony M. Kennedy of the Supreme Court.

Justice Kennedy’s order came shortly after Idaho filed a request to the Supreme Court for an immediate stay of the appeals court ruling. The ruling was the latest in a nearly unbroken string of courtroom victories for gay couples. Justice Kennedy asked the proponents of same-sex marriage to file a response by Thursday afternoon.

The ruling striking down the Nevada and Idaho bans, by the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, in San Francisco, came a day after the Supreme Court allowed similar rulings by three other appeals courts to stand. That cleared the way for same-sex marriage to start immediately in Indiana, Oklahoma, Utah, Virginia and Wisconsin and to be extended soon to six other states in those circuits. (see Oct 10)

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