May 27, 2015 – Segment 1
Marc shares some of the events that happened on this day in history, including the birth of Lisa “Left Eye” Lopez of TLC and the day when, in 1968, Mexican American students who were part of the Chicano movement shut down schools in East LA demanding the release of the LA 13. The LA 13 were Chicano students indicted for conspiracy to disturb schools and the peace, which was a felony charge for leading earlier demonstrations for better schools, racial equality, an end to the War in Vietnam and in solidarity with Black community in LA.
President Roosevelt proclaims national emergency
People could smell war in the air this day in 1941 as President Franklin Delano Roosevelt declared an unlimited national emergency. No one knew that seven months from this day on December 7th, the war would begin for the US in the battle of Pearl Harbor.
And remembering Pearl Harbor, we pay homage today to Navy cook Dorie Miller. In the days leading to the attack Pearl Harbor, Black sailors were only allowed to be cooks or maintenance workers. Dorrie Miller was one of those men who had joined the navy in 1939. He was serving on the USS West Virginia when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor on the sunny Sunday morning of December 7th in Hawaii. With sailors being mowed down by Japanese machine gun fire from the air, Dorie Miller ran from the galley to take hold of an anti-aircraft gun that he had never been trained for or allowed to train for. With bodies slumped around him he opened fire, downing Japanese planes. Wounded, he kept firing until all ammunitions were spent, saving the lives of the men he served with. Today in 1941, Doris “Dorrie” Miller became the first African American to be awarded the Navy’s highest combat honor, The Navy Cross.
Central High School in Arkansas to integrate that school and get an education. They were faced with physical violence and state-sanctioned opposition. But, they persevered with dignity and strength. Today in 1958, the oldest of those 9, Ernest Gideon Green, became the first African American to graduate from Little Rock Central High School.
In 1968, as now around the country and world, students took to the streets to protest injustice, inequality and oppression. Two of those happened today in 1968:
Across the ocean in France, 50,000 students who were part of the National Union of Students went on strike. It was the beginning of a struggle that soon included 22% of the population, when 11 million workers struck in solidarity and occupied schools and factories to protest the excesses of capitalism.
And here in the US in Los Angeles – Mexican American students who were part of the Chicano movement shut down schools in East LA demanding the release of the LA 13. The LA 13 were Chicano students indicted for conspiracy to disturb schools and the peace, which was a felony charge for leading earlier demonstrations for better schools, racial equality, an end to the War in Vietnam and in solidarity with Black community in LA. 20,000 students under the banners of Chicano Power” and “Viva la Raza” closed their schools down today in 1968.
And let’s remember another unsung person from our history .. Victoria Earl Mathews, who was born enslaved in 1861. Her mother fled to New York to try to raise money for her children’s freedom, and in 1869 she won custody of her children, becoming the first Black person to successfully sue and win in a Georgia court. Her daughter Victoria Earl Mathews went on to become a suffragette, an activist for rights of African Americans, and a writer. Her books, like short stories called Aunt Lindy took on the horrors of miscegenation brought on by sexual abuse. She wrote books on liberation struggles, organized anti-lunching campaigns with Ida B. Wells and founded what became known as the White Rose, which were settlement houses for young working class Black women from the Great Migration North. Remember Victoria Earl Mathews.
And Happy Birthday to Emmy Award winning Lou Gossett born on this day in 1936 …
This also the birthday of Vice President Hubert Humphrey born in 1911, who narrowly lost the race for President to Richard Nixon in 1968.
And US Marshall Wild Bill Hickok was born today in 1837.
Here’s a song for your May 27th. Today is the birthday of Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes of the R&B group TLC. She was born today in 1971 in Philadelphia. And we remember her by listening to one of TLC’s most well-known songs, “Waterfalls.”
TLC – Waterfalls