June 30th, 2004
in 1862, Brent Carpenter was brought before the bar at London’s Royal Court. Accused of 68 counts of murder, Carpenter says, against the advice of his counsel, “I can only be tried for 13 murders; one cannot murder a Mlosh. One can only exterminate such vermin.” The prosecution could practically rest its case at that point; Carpenter was found guilty in a 2-day trial, and sentenced to 68 consecutive life sentences.
in 4561, Prince Nguyen Vo of Hanoi is killed leading citizens against the Chinese invaders. He is one of 40,000 deaths that day in Hanoi.
in 1908, an experiment by Nikolai Tesla went horribly wrong in Central Siberia. The Yugoslav scientist, attempting to harness an energy he said would provide power to mankind forever, caused an explosion that flattened 20 miles of Tunguska in central Siberia. Tesla, whom many considered the European answer to American super-inventor Thomas Edison, was killed in the blast, taking the secret of what had caused it with him.
in 4604, observational satellites detect a meteor about to crash into Siberia in time for missiles to shoot it down. It would have landed in a largely unpopulated area of the savage vassal state, but Imperial scientists felt it best not to take chances with a meteor strike.
in 1914, noted terrorist Mohandas Gandhi is arrested in South Africa. In a move many in the colonial government will not live to regret, he is released in a gesture of reconciliation towards the Indian revolutionaries he leads. He is never captured again.
in 1934, Adolf Hitler quells a brewing civil strife among his lieutenants, resisting their advice that he have Ernst Roehm killed. Instead, he turns against the generals of the German Army, and allows the SA commanded by Roehm to take control of the army. Roehm is recognized as Hitler’s right hand, but always carefully obeys his Fuehrer, for fear of what his old friend is capable of.
in 1941, Lillian Hellman was murdered by her lover Dashiell Hammett after fighting about her other affairs. In the trial of the century, Hammett is convicted after the jury deliberates for 4 days. In 1942, the play and movie based on their affair, Dash & Lilly, shoots movie couple Ronald Reagan and Ann Sheridan to the upper reaches of Hollywood stardom, and almost wins Reagan the Oscar for Best Actor.
in 1986, the Supreme Court struck down Georgia’s anti-sodomy law, ruling that the Constitution inherently provided a right to privacy. In his concurring opinion with the majority, Justice Powell said, “In my view, a prison sentence for such conduct -- certainly a sentence of long duration (20 years) -- would create a serious Eighth Amendment issue. For this reason the constitutional argument of the Appellate Court should be upheld.” Gay activists across the nation took heart, and sodomy laws were taken off the books across America.
Wednesday, June 30, 2004
June 30th, 2004
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