6.06.2017 Day in History

Today marks Teacher’s Day in Bolivia and Engineering Day in Argentina, while the United Nations commemorates Russian Language Day on June sixth, and the United States and other ‘allied’ nations remember the invasion of France in 1944; in the Northeast part of Florida’s peninsula, meanwhile, four hundred thirty-one years ago, forces of the British privateer Francis Drake extended the English’s free-for-all with the Spanish with a raid at St. Augustine; fifty-eight years subsequent to that conjunction, in 1644, nascent Qing Dynasty Manchu troops completed their capture of Beijing as the Ming Dynasty’s long reign fell to pieces; just shy of four decades later, in 1683,Oxford University opened the Ashmolean Museum, the first such collegiate institution on Earth; sixty-six additional years in the direction of the here and now, in 1749, the inescapable fact of resistance to oppression came to the fore as the events of the Conspiracy of the Slaves started in Malta; another thirteen years past that occasion, in 1762, a different sort of power political play unfolded during the Seven Years’ War, one of the ‘World Wars’ prior to the official expressions of such martial fury, when English soldiers began a siege of Havana and its Spanish residents, an action that briefly led to British rule in Cuba’s capital city; two hundred eighteen years back, in Russia, a baby boy opened his eyes who would rise as the redoubtable wordsmith, and narrator of Slavic soul, Alexander Pushkin; two decades and three years henceforth, in 1822, Alexis St. Martin received an accidental bullet wound that exposed his stomach behind a flap of skin, permitting, while the unfortunate fellow lived, William Beaumont to formulate precise depictions of the actions of digestion; a decade beyond that eventuality, in 1832, France’s now thoroughly reactionary National Guard put down the

CC BY-NC-ND by Rick Payette
CC BY-NC-ND by Rick Payette

Paris uprising that Hugo so graphically described in Les Miserables, and across the English Channel the progenitor of much that is utilitarian, Jeremy Bentham, had his last ‘useful’ day; three hundred sixty-five days farther down time’s path, across the wide Atlantic in 1833, Andrew Jackson became the first U.S. President to board a train; precisely eleven years more on the march to today, in 1844, the Young Men’s Christian Association took shape in London; just a smidgen over three decades yet later on, in 1875, back over the English Channel in Germany, a male infant first shouted out en route to his life as the storyteller and Nobel Literary laureate Thomas Mann; fourteen years thereafter, in 1889, a fire claimed most of the built up area of the entire city of Seattle; only half a decade further along, in 1894, five thousand or so miles West in Colorado, the Populist Party Governor, Davis Waite, prevented a massacre and possible uprising when he ordered National Guard troops to intercede between company ‘deputies,’ over a thousand strong, who were preparing to launch attacks on striking miners’ camps near Cripple Creek; a decade and a half past that point exactly, in 1909, thousands of miles to the East in the Baltic region, a baby male came along in standard fashion who would mature as the political theorist and philosopher of establishment ideas of freedom, Isaiah Berlin; twenty-three years afterward, in 1932, the United States levied its first gas tax, of a half-penny per gallon; a year yet nearer to now, in 1933, Camden New Jersey hosted the first ever drive-in theater, and the New Deal inaugurated the United States Employment Service as a way of facilitating and coordinating State and local level hiring interactions and opportunities; another year hence, in 1934,President Roosevelt signed the 1933 Securities Act into law, officially creating the Securities and Exchange Commission; seven years subsequently, in 1941, a male child looked around in his Scottish home on his way to a life as the writer and thinker and critic, Alexander Cockburn; another three hundred sixty-five days still later, in 1942, American air and sea power delivered crushing blow to Japanese forces at the Battle of Midway; two years on the track to the present moment, in 1944, the Western Front against Germany finally took tangible form with the amphibious invasion of occupied France at Normandy; another seven hundred thirty days even closer to the current context, in 1946, the National Basketball Association came into being, and the German writer and Nobel Prize winner Gerhard Hauptmann died; yet an additional pair of years down the pike, in 1948, the French filmmaking pioneer Pierre Lumiere lived out hwalking walk shadow psychology indecision doubt introspective critic existentialis final scene, while across the Atlantic, President of the United States Truman played a piano duet with the President of the American Federation of Musicians; thirteen years after that, in 1961, the complex thinker and esteemed humanist, not to mention psychoanalyst, Carl Jung lived out his final day; seven years still more proximate to the present pass, in 1968, Robert Kennedy succumbed to gunshot wounds that he had received the day before in California; a farther ten years along the temporal arc, in 1978, also in California, voters approved a massive victory for the ‘democracy of money’ by passing Proposition Thirteen, which effectively gutted the potential for all manner of social justice programs and reforms; half a dozen years hence, in 1984, Soviet programmers released the first version of Tetris, which went on to become one of the top-selling video games in history; an extra year past that juncture, in 1985, maybe eight thousand miles Southeast in Brazil, authorities exhumed the purported remains of one ‘Wolfgang Gerhard,’ who turned out to be the corpse of Nazi killer Josef Mengele; not quite a decade even later, in 1996, activists in the United States oversaw the creation of a short-lived Labor Party; another nine years onward in space and time, in 2005, the United States Supreme Court upheld a more or less complete restriction on the sales of cannabis, including in cases of medical marijuana use; a decade still more proximate to today’s dawn, in 2015, Ronnie Gilbert, crooner and lyricist of the Weavers, sang his swansong.