4/3 - Howl Day (unofficial)
Believe it or not, there was a time when the ACLU would rush to the defense of speech, even if, or especially if, it was deemed offensive to or by some person(s), group(s) or government agency or agencies; regardless of whether it was declared to be offensive, obscene, hateful, unpatriotic, seditious, erroneous or anything else. ("misinformation", "disinformation" and "conspiracy theory" were generally not a thing back then) Armed with the knowledge that
Censorship is to art as lynching is to justice.
― Henry Louis Gates Jr., and
Whoever would overthrow the liberty of a nation must begin by subduing the freeness of speech.
― Benjamin Franklin, the ACLU of that era stepped up to defend Allen Ginsberg's Howl against charges that it was somehow "obscene" and should therefore be suppressed. On this day in 1955 the ACLU announced that it would defend the work against the preposterous and inherently obscene charges made and, in October '57 they won in California Superior Court. The people, the state, the country and the whole damned world were all better off.
I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness, starving hysterical naked,
dragging themselves through the negro streets at dawn looking for an angry fix,
angelheaded hipsters burning for the ancient heavenly connection to the starry dynamo in the machinery of night,
who poverty and tatters and hollow-eyed and high sat up smoking in the supernatural darkness of cold-water flats floating across the tops of cities contemplating jazz,
A. Ginsburg; Howl
On this day in history:
1860 -- The first successful Pony Express run from St. Joseph, Missouri, to Sacramento, California started,
1882 -- Robert Ford killed Jessee James
1885 -- Gottlieb Daimler received a patent for his engine - a good idea at the time
1895 -- Oscar Wilde's libel case against Queensberry began - a bad idea, but Ballad of Readng Gaol
1922 -- Stalin became General Secretary of the Soviet Union's Communist Party - a very bad idea
1948 -- Truman signed the Marshall Plan
1948 -- The Juju uprising in South Korea began
1955 -- The ACLU announced it would defend Ginsberg's Howl - an excellent idea
1968 -- MLK Jr. delivered his "I've Been to the Mountaintop" speech
1981 -- The Osborne 1 was unveiled
2007 –- A French TGV train set another new world speed record.
2000 -- Microsoft was ruled to have violated US antitrust law but was not punished and no victims were recompensed
2010 -- Apple Inc. released the first iPad, foreshadowing ifrenzy to come.
2016 -- The Panama Papers leaked information on 214,488 offshore companies
Some people who were born on this day:
Cockroaches and socialites are the only things that can stay up all night and eat anything.
~~ Herb Caen
1639 -- Alessandro Stradella, composer
1778 -- Pierre Bretonneau, doctor who performed the first successful tracheotomy
1783 -- Washington Irving, writer
1791 -- Anne Lister, diarist, mountaineer, and traveller, "the first modern lesbian".
1807 -- Mary Carpenter, educational and social reformer
1822 -- Edward Everett Hale, writer and preacher
1823 -- Boss Tweed, typical politician
1885 -- Bud Fisher, cartoonist, think Mutt & Jeff
1886 -- Dooley Wilson, actor and singer
1895 -- Zez Confrey, pianist and composer
1898 -- Henry Luce, publisher, co-founded Time Magazine
1904 -- Russel Wright, dinnerware and furniture designer
1916 -- Herb Caen, writer, the Sakamenna Kid
1919 -- Ervin Drake, songwriter and composer, it was a very good year
1924 -- Marlon Brando who couldda been a contender
1924 -- Roza Shanina, Russian sniper
1936 -- Jimmy McGriff, organist and bandleader
1936 -- Harold Vick, saxophonist and flautist
1938 -- Jeff Barry, songwriter
1941 -- Jan Berry, singer and songwriter, (Jan & Dean) inspiration and mentor of the Beach Boys
1942 -- Billy Joe Royal, guitarist, singer, songwriter and boondocker
1943 -- Richard Manuel, pianist, singer, songwriter and bandmember
1944 -- Tony Orlando, Captain Kangaroo look-alike
1946 -- Dee Murray, bassist, mostly with Elton
1949 -- Richard Thompson, singer, songwriter and guitarist
1951 -- Mitch Woods, singer, songwriter and pianist
1965 –- Nazia Hassan, pop singer, songwriter, lawyer and social activist
Some people who died on this day:
No man knows what he can do until he tries.
~~ Carter G. Woodson
CE 33 -- Jesus of Nazareth, or some other date, or year, but wait, he didn't die anyway, did he? What?
1882 -- Jesse James, criminal and outlaw, sometimes folk hero
1897 -- Johannes Brahms, pianist and composer
1901 -- Richard D'Oyly Carte
1902 -- Esther Hobart Morris, lawyer and judge
1950 -- Kurt Weill, composer and pianist
1950 -- Carter G. Woodson, historian, author, and journalist, founded Black History Month
1978 -- Ray Noble, bandleader, composer, and actor
1990 -- Sarah Vaughan, singer
1991 -- Graham Greene, writer
1998 -- Mary Cartwright, mathematician of chaos
2014 -- Arthur "Guitar Boogie" Smith, guitarist, fiddler, and composer
2015 -- Bob Burns, drummer and songwriter
2016 –- Joe Medicine Crow, anthropologist, historian, and author
Some Holidays, Holy Days, Festivals, Feast Days, Days of Recognition, and such:
I'm inventing Howl Day, so there.
Jeff Barry & his wife Ellie Greenwich wrote a ton of hits, such as
Billy Joe Royal
Jesus of Nazareth
Richard D'Oyly Carte put together an opera company and brought together Mssrs Gilbert & Sullivan
Kurt Weill (hiya Mimi)
Arthur "Guitar Boogie" Smith
Ok, it's an open thread, so it's up to you folks now. So what's on your mind?
I won't be here when this posts, enjoy and play nice