Emmett Till (July 25, 1941 – August 28, 1955) was an African-American boy who was murdered in Mississippi at the age of 14 after reportedly flirting with a white woman. Till was from Chicago, Illinois, visiting his relatives in the Mississippi Delta region when he spoke to 21-year-old Carolyn Bryant, the married proprietor of a small grocery store. Several nights later, Bryant's husband Roy and his half-brother J. W. Milam arrived at Till's great-uncle's house where they took Till, transported him to a barn, beat him and gouged out one of his eyes, before shooting him through the head and disposing of his body in the Tallahatchie River, weighting it with a 70-pound cotton gin fan tied around his neck with barbed wire. His body was discovered and retrieved from the river three days later.
Till was returned to Chicago and his mother, who had raised him mostly by herself, insisted on a public funeral service with an open casket to show the world the brutality of the killing. Tens of thousands attended his funeral or viewed his casket and images of his mutilated body were published in black magazines and newspapers, rallying popular black support and white sympathy across the U.S. Intense scrutiny was brought to bear on the condition of black civil rights in Mississippi, with newspapers around the country critical of the state. Although initially local newspapers and law enforcement officials decried the violence against Till and called for justice, they soon began responding to national criticism by defending Mississippians, which eventually transformed into support for the killers. The trial attracted a vast amount of press attention. Bryant and Milam were acquitted of Till's kidnapping and murder, but months later, protected by double jeopardy, they admitted to killing him in a magazine interview.
On this day in 1957, South Carolina Senator (and former Dixiecrat) Strom Thurmond spoke for over 24 hours in an attempt to prevent the Senate from voting on the Civil Rights Act of 1957.
After it was proposed to Congress by President Dwight Eisenhower, Senator Strom Thurmond, an ardent segregationist, sustained the longest one-person filibuster in history in an attempt to keep it from becoming law. His one-man filibuster lasted 24 hours and 18 minutes and began with readings of every state's election laws in alphabetical order. Thurmond later read from the Declaration of Independence, the Bill of Rights, and George Washington's Farewell Address. His speech set the record for a Senate filibuster. Despite Sen. Thurmond's heroic efforts, the bill passed the House with a vote of 270 to 97 and the Senate 60 to 15. President Eisenhower signed it into law on September 9, 1957.
On this day in 1963, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. gave his I Have a Dream speech on the National Mall in Washington DC.
On this day 47 years ago, The 1964 Race Riots began in Philadelphia PA.
The unrest began on the evening of August 28 after a black woman named Odessa Bradford got into an argument with two police officers, one black, Robert Wells, and the other white, John Hoff, after her car stalled at 23rd Street and Columbia Avenue. Because Bradford's car had stalled, and she was unable to drive it, an argument between her and the two officers ensued. The officers then tried to physically remove Bradford from the car. As the argument went on, a large crowd assembled in the area. A man tried to come to Bradford's aid by attacking the police officers at the scene; both he and Bradford were arrested.
Rumors then spread throughout North Philadelphia that a pregnant black woman had been beaten to death by white police officers. Later that evening, and throughout the next two days, angry mobs looted and burned mostly white-owned businesses in North Philadelphia, mainly along Columbia Avenue. Outnumbered, the police response was to withdraw from the area rather than aggressively confront the rioters.
Although no one was killed, 341 people were injured, 774 people were arrested and 225 stores were damaged or destroyed in the three days of rioting.
On this day in 1968, the Chicago Police rioted.
The Democratic National convention was held in Chicago during a year of violence, political turbulence, and civil unrest, particularly riots in more than 100 cities following the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. on April 4. The convention also followed the assassination of Democratic presidential hopeful Senator Robert F. Kennedy, who had been shot on June 5. Both Kennedy and Senator Eugene McCarthy had been running against the eventual Democratic presidential nominee Hubert Humphrey.
Chicago's mayor, Richard J. Daley, intended to showcase his and the city's achievements to national Democrats and the news media. Instead, the proceedings became notorious for the large number of demonstrators and the use of force by the Chicago police during what was supposed to be, in the words of the Yippie activist organizers, “A Festival of Life.” Rioting took place between demonstrators and the Chicago Police Department, who were assisted by the Illinois National Guard. The disturbances were well publicized by the mass media, with some journalists and reporters being caught up in the violence. Network newsmen Mike Wallace and Dan Rather were both roughed up by the Chicago police while inside the halls of the Democratic Convention.
August 28, 1968 came to be known as the day a “police riot” took place. The title of “police riot” came out of the Walker Report, which amassed a great deal of information and eyewitness accounts to determine what happened in Chicago. At approximately 3:30 p.m., a young boy lowered the American flag at a legal rally taking place at Grant Park. The demonstration was made up of 10,000 protestors. The police broke through the crowd and began beating the boy, while the crowd pelted the police with food, rocks, and chunks of concrete. The biggest clash in Chicago took place that day. Police fought with the protestors and vice versa. The chants of the protestors shifted from “Hell no, we won’t go” to “Pigs are whores.” Tom Hayden, one of the leaders of Students for a Democratic Society, encouraged protestors to move out of the park to ensure that if they were to be teargassed, the whole city would be tear gassed, and made sure that if blood were spilled in Chicago it would happen throughout the city. The amount of tear gas used to suppress the protestors was so great that it eventually made its way to the Hilton Hotel, where it disturbed Hubert Humphrey while in his shower. The police were taunted by the protestors with chants of “Kill, kill, kill.” They sprayed demonstrators and bystanders indiscriminately with Mace. The police assault in front of the Hilton Hotel became the most famous image of the Chicago demonstrations of 1968.The entire event took place live under the T.V. lights for seventeen minutes with the crowd shouting, “The whole world is watching.”
Meanwhile, in the convention hall, Senator Abraham Ribicoff used his nominating speech for George McGovern to tell of the violence going on outside the convention hall, saying that “with George McGovern we wouldn’t have Gestapo tactics on the streets of Chicago.” Mayor Daley responded to his remark with something that the T.V. sound was not able to pick up, but it was later revealed by lip-readers that Daley had cursed:
“Fuck you, you Jew son of a bitch! You lousy motherfucker! Go home!”
That night, NBC News had been switching back and forth between the demonstrators being beaten by the police to the festivities over Humphrey’s victory in the convention hall. It was under the cameras of the convention center, for all of America to see. It was clear that the Democratic party was sorely divided. After the Chicago protests, the demonstrators were confident that the majority of Americans would side with them over what had happened in Chicago, especially because of police behavior. They were shocked to learn that controversy over the war in Vietnam overshadowed their cause. Daley claimed to have received 135,000 letters supporting his actions and only 5000 condemning them. Public opinion polls demonstrated that the majority of Americans supported the Mayor’s tactics.
Not at my house, though. I remember watching all this stuff on the news.
As long as you reproduce my reply word for word, and the question, you may use it... I'd appreciate it if you'd let me phrase the question. There is more than one way. Here's how I would ask it: 'Do you think that opposites attract?' My own reply would be that I'm the other sort – I find that birds of a feather flock together. That answers your question.