Today is Wednesday, March 25, the 85th day of 2020. There are 281 days left in the year.
Today’s Highlight in History:
On March 25, 1931, in the so-called “Scottsboro Boys” case, nine young black men were taken off a train in Alabama, accused of raping two white women; after years of convictions, death sentences and imprisonment, the nine were eventually vindicated.
On this date:
In 1634, English colonists sent by Lord Baltimore arrived in present-day Maryland.
In 1894, Jacob S. Coxey began leading an “army” of unemployed from Massillon (MA’-sih-luhn), Ohio, to Washington, D.C., to demand help from the federal government.
In 1911, 146 people, mostly young female immigrants, were killed when fire broke out at the Triangle Shirtwaist Co. in New York.
In 1915, the U.S. Navy lost its first commissioned submarine as the USS F-4 sank off Hawaii, claiming the lives of all 21 crew members.
In 1947, a coal-dust explosion inside the Centralia Coal Co. Mine No. 5 in Washington County, Illinois, claimed 111 lives; 31 men survived.
In 1960, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, in New York, ruled that the D.H. Lawrence novel “Lady Chatterley’s Lover” was not obscene and could be sent through the mails. Ray Charles recorded “Georgia on My Mind” as part of his “The Genius Hits the Road” album in New York.
In 1963, private pilot Ralph Flores and his 21-year-old passenger, Helen Klaben, were rescued after being stranded for seven weeks in brutally cold conditions in the Yukon after their plane crashed.
In 1965, the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. led 25,000 people to the Alabama state capitol in Montgomery after a five-day march from Selma to protest the denial of voting rights to blacks. Later that day, civil rights activist Viola Liuzzo, a white Detroit homemaker, was shot and killed by Ku Klux Klansmen.
In 1985, “Amadeus” won eight Academy Awards, including best picture, best director for Milos (MEE’-lohsh) Forman and best actor for F. Murray Abraham.
In 1988, in New York City’s so-called “Preppie Killer” case, Robert Chambers Jr. pleaded guilty to first-degree manslaughter in the death of 18-year-old Jennifer Levin. (Chambers received 5 to 15 years in prison; he was released in 2003 after serving the full sentence.)
In 1990, 87 people, most of them Honduran and Dominican immigrants, were killed when fire raced through an illegal social club in New York City.
In 2018, in an interview with “60 Minutes,” adult film star Stormy Daniels said she had been threatened and warned to keep silent about an alleged sexual encounter with Donald Trump in 2006. A fire at a shopping mall in a Siberian city in Russia killed more than 60 people, including 41 children.
Ten years ago: Osama bin Laden threatened in a new message to kill any Americans al-Qaida captured if the U.S. executed Khalid Sheik Mohammed (HAH’-leed shayk moh-HAH’-med), the self-professed mastermind of the Sept. 11 attacks, or other al-Qaida suspects. Defense Secretary Robert Gates approved new rules easing enforcement of the “don’t ask, don’t tell” ban on gays serving openly in the military. Daisuke Takahashi gave Japan its first men’s title at the World Figure Skating Championships in Turin, Italy.
Five years ago: Afghan President Ashraf Ghani thanked the U.S. Congress for billions of American tax dollars and vowed his war-wracked country would be self-reliant within the decade. British singer Zayn Malik shocked his fans by announcing he was quitting the chart-topping band One Direction.
One year ago: UFC superstar Conor McGregor announced his retirement on social media. Apple announced the launch of a video streaming service, Apple TV Plus, that could compete with Netflix and Amazon with ad-free original series and films.
Today’s Birthdays: Movie reviewer Gene Shalit is 94. Former astronaut James Lovell is 92. Feminist activist and author Gloria Steinem is 86. Singer Anita Bryant is 80. Actor Paul Michael Glaser is 77. Singer Sir Elton John is 73. Actress Bonnie Bedelia is 72. Actress-comedian Mary Gross is 67. Actor James McDaniel is 62. Former Sen. John Ensign, R-Nev., is 62. Movie producer Amy Pascal is 62. Rock musician Steve Norman (Spandau Ballet) is 60. Actress Brenda Strong is 60. Actor Fred Goss is 59. Actor-writer-director John Stockwell is 59. Actress Marcia Cross is 58. Author Kate DiCamillo is 56. Actress Lisa Gay Hamilton is 56. Actress Sarah Jessica Parker is 55. Baseball Hall of Famer Tom Glavine is 54. TV personality Ben Mankiewicz is 53. Olympic bronze medal figure skater Debi Thomas is 53. Actor Laz Alonso is 49. Singer Melanie Blatt (All Saints) is 45. Actor Domenick Lombardozzi is 44. Actor Lee Pace is 41. Actor Sean Faris is 38. Comedian-actor Alex Moffat (TV: “Saturday Night Live”) is 38. Former auto racer Danica Patrick is 38. Actress-singer Katharine McPhee is 36. Comedian-actor Chris Redd (TV: “Saturday Night Live”) is 35. Singer Jason Castro is 33. Rapper Big Sean is 32.
Rap DJ-producer Ryan Lewis is 32. Actor Matthew Beard is 31. Actress-singer Aly (AKA Alyson) Michalka (mish-AL’-kah) is 31. Actor Kiowa Gordon is 30. Actress Seychelle Gabriel is 29.
Thought for Today: “The truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it emotionally.” — Flannery O’Connor, American author (1925-1964).
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Today is Thursday, March 26, the 86th day of 2020. There are 280 days left in the year.
Today's Highlight in History:
On March 26, 1945, during World War II, Iwo Jima was fully secured by U.S. forces following a final, desperate attack by Japanese soldiers.
On this date:
In 1812, an earthquake devastated Caracas, Venezuela, causing an estimated 26,000 deaths, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.
In 1827, composer Ludwig van Beethoven died in Vienna.
In 1911, American playwright Tennessee Williams ("The Glass Menagerie," "A Streetcar Named Desire," "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof") was born in Columbus, Miss.
In 1962, the U.S. Supreme Court, in Baker v. Carr, gave federal courts the power to order reapportionment of states' legislative districts.
In 1964, the musical play "Funny Girl," starring Barbra Streisand as Fanny Brice, opened on Broadway.
In 1979, a peace treaty was signed by Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin (men-AH'-kem BAY'-gihn) and Egyptian President Anwar Sadat and witnessed by President Jimmy Carter at the White House.
In 1982, groundbreaking ceremonies took place in Washington, D.C., for the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.
In 1988, Jesse Jackson stunned fellow Democrats by soundly defeating Michael S. Dukakis in Michigan's Democratic presidential caucuses.
In 1992, a judge in Indianapolis sentenced former heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson to six years in prison for raping a Miss Black America contestant. (Tyson ended up serving three years.)
In 1997, the bodies of 39 members of the Heaven's Gate techno-religious cult who committed suicide were found inside a rented mansion in Rancho Santa Fe, California.
In 2013, Italy's top criminal court overturned the acquittal of American Amanda Knox in the grisly murder of British roommate Meredith Kercher and ordered Knox to stand trial again. (Although convicted in absentia, Knox was exonerated by the Italian Supreme Court in 2015.)
In 2018, a toxicology report obtained by The Associated Press revealed that the late pop music superstar Prince had levels of fentanyl in his body that multiple experts described as "exceedingly high."
Ten years ago: The U.S. and Russia sealed the first major nuclear weapons treaty in nearly two decades, agreeing to slash the former Cold War rivals' warhead arsenals by nearly one-third. A South Korean warship exploded and sank near a disputed maritime border with North Korea, killing 46 sailors. (South Korea blamed North Korea, which denied involvement.) A truck collided with a van on I-65 in Kentucky, killing 10 Mennonites in the van and the truck driver. NBA player Gilbert Arenas was sentenced to 30 days in a halfway house for bringing guns into the Washington Wizards locker room.
Five years ago: Indiana Gov. Mike Pence signed a measure prohibiting state and local laws that "substantially burden" the ability of people to follow their religious beliefs; opponents charged the new law could legalize discrimination against gay people.
One year ago: The House failed to override President Donald Trump’s first veto, allowing him to steer billions of extra dollars to construct border barriers. The Senate defeated a motion to take up the Green New Deal, rejecting an opportunity to debate a comprehensive climate change plan offered by Democrats. Prosecutors in Chicago abruptly dropped all charges against Jussie Smollett, the “Empire” actor who was accused of faking a racist, anti-gay attack on himself; they said they still believed that Smollett had concocted the assault. (A grand jury revived the criminal case with new charges against Smollett in February 2020.) Rockland County in New York City’s northern suburbs declared a state of emergency over a measles outbreak that had infected more than 150 people; the action included a ban against unvaccinated children in public places.
Today's Birthdays: Retired Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor is 90. Actor Alan Arkin is 86. Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is 85. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is 80. Actor James Caan is 80. Author Erica Jong is 78. Journalist Bob Woodward is 77. Singer Diana Ross is 76. Actor Johnny Crawford is 74. Rock singer Steven Tyler (Aerosmith) is 72. Singer and TV personality Vicki Lawrence is 71. Actor Ernest Thomas is 71. Comedian Martin Short is 70. Country singer Ronnie McDowell is 70. Movie composer Alan Silvestri is 70. Rock musician Monte Yoho is 68. Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao is 67. Radio talk show host Curtis Sliwa is 66. Country singer Dean Dillon is 65. Country singer Charly McClain is 64. TV personality Leeza Gibbons is 63. Actress Ellia English is 61. Actress Jennifer Grey is 60. College and Pro Football Hall of Famer Marcus Allen is 60. Actor Billy Warlock is 59. Actor Eric Allan Kramer is 58. Basketball and College Basketball Hall of Famer John Stockton is 58. Actor Michael Imperioli is 54. Rock musician James Iha (EE'-hah) is 52. Country singer Kenny Chesney is 52. Movie director Martin McDonagh (Film: "Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri") is 50. Actress Leslie Mann is 48. Actor T.R. Knight is 47. Rapper Juvenile is 45. Actress Amy Smart is 44. Actress Bianca Kajlich (KY'-lihk) is 43. Moderator Margaret Brennan (TV: "Face the Nation") is 40. Actor Sterling Sulieman is 36. Actress Keira Knightley is 35. Rapper J-Kwon is 34. Actress Carly Chaikin is 30.
Thought for Today: "Life's like a play; it's not the length but the excellence of the acting that matters." — Seneca the Younger, Roman statesman and philosopher (3 B.C.-A.D. 65).