June 9, 2020
Day 161 of 366
June 9th is the 161st day of the year. It is Autonomy Day in Åland, celebrating the anniversary of the first congregation of the regional government. The Åland Islands, or more simply, Åland, is an archipelago province at the entrance to the Gulf of Bothnia in the Baltic Sea belonging to Finland. They were granted autonomy in 1921.
Historical items of note:
- In 1732, James Oglethorpe was granted a royal charter for the colony of the future U.S. state of Georgia.
- In 1891, composer and songwriter Cole Porter was born.
- In 1922, pilot and poet John Gillespie Magee, Jr. was born.
- In 1934, Donald Duck made his first appearance in a cartoon called “The Wise Little Hen”.
- In 1951, composer, conductor, and producer James Newton Howard was born.
- In 1954, Joseph Welch, special counsel for the United States Army, lashed out at Senator Joseph McCarthy during the Army–McCarthy hearings, giving McCarthy the famous rebuke, “You’ve done enough. Have you no sense of decency, sir, at long last? Have you left no sense of decency?”
- In 1959, the USS George Washington (SSBN-598) was launched. It was the first nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarine.
- In 1961, actor, producer, and author Michael J. Fox was born.
- Also in 1961, screenwriter, producer, and playwright Aaron Sorkin was born.
- In 1963, actor Johnny Depp was born.
- In 1964, actress Gloria Reuben was born.
- In 1973, Secretariat won the U.S. Triple Crown of Thoroughbred Racing.
- In 1978, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints finally opened its priesthood to “all worthy men”, ending a 148-year-old policy of inexplicably excluding black men from one of the most important aspects of their faith.
- Also in 1978, actress Michaela Conlin was born.
- In 1981, actress and filmmaker Natalie Portman was born.
- In 1989, Star Trek V: The Final Frontier premiered.
- In 2014, Laverne Cox became the first transgender woman to appear on the cover of Time Magazine.
June 9th is Coral Triangle Day.
The day celebrates and raises awareness of ocean conservation and protection, especially on the Coral Triangle, the world’s epicenter of marine biodiversity.
The Coral Triangle is the vast ocean expense located along the equator and the confluence of the Western Pacific and Indian Oceans. The region covers the exclusive economic zones of six countries: Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, and East Timor, collectively known as the “CT6” countries. The Coral Triangle is considered one of the three mega ecological complexes on Earth. The other two are the Congo Basin and the Amazon Rainforest.
The region represents the global epicenter of marine life abundance and diversity, containing 76% of all known coral species, 37% of all known coral reef fish species, 53% of the world’s coral reefs, the greatest extent of mangrove forests in the world, and spawning and juvenile growth areas for the world’s largest tuna fishery.
The area also may have a buffer against the future of climate change, making it potentially the world’s most important “refuge” for marine life. The combined resources provide profound benefits to the 363 million people who reside within the CT6 countries and benefit many millions more outside the region.
That said, the region is under significant threat by warming, acidifying, and rising seas.
Coral Triangle Day was first observed in 2012, working in conjunction with World Oceans Day.
The Thing About Today is an effort to look at each day of 2020 with respect to its historical context.
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