2.24.2017 Day in History

Today is Women’s Day in Zoroastrian tradition, Engineer’s Day elsewhere in Iran, Flag Day in Mexico, and National Artists Day in Thailand; in the Eastern Roman Empire seventeen hundred fourteen years ago, Emperor Galerius first broadcast an edict that permitted and encouraged persecution of Christians, a situation that continued for nearly a decade; a hundred eighty-one years past that, in 484, meanwhile, the Vandal King Huneric furthered his support for Arian thinking by removing Christian bishops, banishing some to Corsica and martyring others; more or less exactly a thousand and ninety-eight years thereafter, in 1582, a thirteenth Pope Gregory instituted the Gregorian Calendar to catch up with missing leap years; precisely a quarter century further along, in 1607, one of the first operas opened its performances as L’Orfeo, in Mantua, Italy; another century and four years onward, in 1711, a George Frideric Handel opera—the first Italian show written for an English stage—premiered in London; twenty-eight years yet later on, in 1739, Persia’s ruler led his empire’s forces in a decisive victory at the Battle of Karnal over the Mughal Emperor in India, setting the stage for the sack of Delhi; two hundred thirty-one years back, a baby boy opened his eyes who would rise as the thinker, writer, folklorist, Wilhelm Grimm; two hundred fourteen years prior to today, the Supreme Court issued its decision in Marbury v. Madison, which established the primacy of judicial review as a ‘court of last appeal’ for issues of law and policy; twenty-eight years past that conjunction, in 1831, the Treaty of Dancing Rabbit Creek finalized the ejection of Mississippi’s Choctaw Indians in accordance with the U.S.’s Indian Removal Act; a hundred forty-nine years before the here and now, Andrew Johnson became the first President to face impeachment by the House of Representatives; another thirteen years thereafter, in 1881, China and Russia signed a treaty that settled border and control issues mostly in favor of Qing Dynasty; fourteen years forward from there, in 1895, insurrection began near Santiago, Cuba, leading soon enough to transfer of imperial domination from Spain to the United States; thirteen years hence, in 1908, the Supreme Court upheld an Oregon statute that disallowed forcing women to work longer than ten hour days; four years more on time’s path, in 1912, police in

CC BY-NC by State Library Victoria Collections
CC BY-NC by State Library Victoria Collections

Lawrence, Massachusetts viciously beat children and women who had taken their fathers’ and husbands’ place on the picket line; half a decade past that, in 1917, across the Atlantic in London, the U.S. ambassador received the Zimmermann telegram, in which German authorities promised Mexicans the return of Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona if the nation would declare war on the United States; seven hundred thirty days henceforth, in 1919, the U.S. Congress passed another in a long line of laws that criminalized child industrial labor, its predecessor’s having just suffered the fate that all of these laws did, till the end of the New Deal, to wit the Supreme Court found them an unwarranted intrusion of the property rights of the rich; two decades onward, in 1939, the Supreme Court did its part to in a different way to defend ruling class profiteering, finding sit-down strikes illegal interference with property’s imprimatur; three years subsequent to that instant, in 1942, Canada’s war administrator authorized internment of all Japanese residents and citizens; thirteen years nearer to now, in 1955, a male child was born who would mature as the wildly successful Steve Jobs; just three hundred sixty-five days after that moment, in 1956, a baby girl entered our midst who would grow up as the incisive theorist of gender and identity and consciousness, Judith Butler; nine years further along the temporal arc, in 1965, the Service Employees

US flag reflexion on Vietnam Veterans Memorial 12 2011 000124 by Mariordo Mario Roverto Durán Ortiz - Own work
US flag reflexion on Vietnam Veterans Memorial 12 2011 000124 by Mariordo Mario Roverto Durán Ortiz – Own work

International Union, Local 1199 became the first labor organization to condemn the U.S.’s illegal intervention in Vietnam; two years shy of two decades past that exact second, in 1983, the U.S. Congress’ condemnation of placing Japanese in concentration camps four decades before resulted in a final report about these matters; half a dozen years still closer to now, in 1989, Ayatollah Khomeini put up $3 million for the assassin who would murder the author ofThe Satanic Verses, Salman Rushdie; just three years less than two decades more proximate to the present pass, in 2006, the magnificent maven of science fiction and novel storytelling, Octavia Butler, closed her eyes for the final time; just two years hence, in 2008, Fidel Castor, after nearly a half century at the helm of Cuba, stepped down from power; four additional years in the direction of now, in 2012, Jay Berenstain, beloved children’s storyteller, breathed his last.