June 12, 2020
Day 164 of 366
June 12th is the 164th day of the year. It is the World Day Against Child Labour, an International Labour Organization (ILO)-sanctioned holiday first launched in 2002 designed to raise awareness and activism to prevent child labor. The ILO is the United Nations body that regulates the world of work, and according to their data, hundreds of millions of girls and boys throughout the world are involved in work that deprives them of receiving an adequate education, health, leisure, and basic freedoms. Of these children, more than half are exposed to the worst forms of child labor, including work in hazardous environments, slavery, drug trafficking and prostitution, and involvement in armed conflict.
In the United States, today is “celebrated” as National Red Rose Day, National Jerky Day, and National Peanut Butter Cookie Day.
Historical items of note:
- In 1665, Thomas Willett was appointed the first mayor of New York City.
- In 1817, the earliest form of bicycle, the dandy horse, was driven by Karl von Drais.
- In 1827, Swiss author Johanna Spyri was born. Her best known work is Heidi.
- In 1916, director and producer Irwin Allen was born.
- In 1929, Anne Frank was born. She would famously chronicle her life in hiding from the soldiers of Nazi Germany. She died at the age of 15 in the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp.
- In 1930, actor and singer Jim Nabors was born.
- In 1935, a ceasefire was negotiated between Bolivia and Paraguay, thereby ending the Chaco War.
- In 1939, filming began on Dr. Cyclops, a film by Paramount Pictures and the first horror film photographed in three-strip Technicolor.
- In 1942, Anne Frank received a diary for her thirteenth birthday.
- In 1948, comic book writer and editor Len Wein was born.
- In 1958, actress Rebecca Holden was born.
- In 1963, NAACP field secretary Medgar Evers was murdered in front of his home in Jackson, Mississippi by Ku Klux Klan member Byron De La Beckwith during the civil rights movement.
- In 1967, You Only Live Twice premiered. It was the fifth James Bond film, and starred Sean Connery with a screenplay by Roald Dahl.
- In 1981, Raiders of the Lost Ark premiered.
- In 1987, at the Brandenburg Gate, United States President Ronald Reagan publicly challenged Mikhail Gorbachev to tear down the Berlin Wall.
- In 1997, Queen Elizabeth II reopened the Globe Theatre in London.
- In 2007, analog television stations (excluding low-powered stations) switched to digital television following the DTV Delay Act.
In 1967, the United States Supreme Court in Loving v. Virginia declared that all U.S. state laws which prohibited interracial marriage were unconstitutional.
The case involved Mildred Loving, a woman of color, and her white husband Richard Loving. In 1958, they were sentenced to a year in prison for marrying each other. Their marriage violated Virginia’s Racial Integrity Act of 1924, which criminalized marriage between people classified as “white” and people classified as “colored”.
Chief Justice Earl Warren wrote in the court majority opinion that “the freedom to marry, or not marry, a person of another race resides with the individual, and cannot be infringed by the State.” The anti-miscegenation laws violated the Equal Protection and Due Process Clauses of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. The decision was followed by an increase in interracial marriages in the United States and is remembered annually on Loving 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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