Browsing: December 22

A Brief History On December 22, 1984, the tables got turned on criminals when their victim shot them!  Bernhard Goetz, a 37-year-old man, riding a New York subway believed himself threatened when approached by four men ages 18 and 19, each of whom previously had been arrested and convicted at least once.  In an instant after initial contact, 5 shots rang out in rapid succession and all four young men were shot.  This famous incident of vigilante “justice” became a cause célèbre in the United States which has a staggering private gun ownership of well over one gun for every…

A Brief History On December 22, 2001, Richard Colvin Reid, age 28, of London, England, attempted to destroy an airliner in flight on its way to Miami, Florida by the use of explosives hidden in his shoe.  The comically inept terrorist failed to ignite his bomb when he was interrupted while attempting to light the fuse with a match during the flight.  Ever since, this career petty criminal turned radical Islamist has been known as “The Shoe Bomber.” Digging Deeper Reid was born in London in 1973 to a White English mother and a father of mixed heritage (Jamaican/African/White).  He…

A Brief History On December 22, 1880, English writer George Eliot, author of such novels as Adam Bede and Silas Marner, died at the age of 61 of a throat infection and chronic kidney problems.  Eliot was actually a woman, born Mary Ann Evans in Warwickshire, England, and was sent by her family to receive a quality education, a relatively rare thing for a girl in those days. Digging Deeper Despite her obvious intelligence, the reason for her referral to the academic world was because she was not expected to land a husband with her decidedly mediocre physical appearance!  Her…

A Brief History On December 22, 69 AD, the reigning Emperor of Rome, Vitellius, was captured and murdered on the Gemonian Stairs in Rome, proving once again how dangerous it was to be a Roman Emperor. Digging Deeper The year 69 AD is also known as “The Year of the Four Emperors” which should give something of a clue as to how short one’s reign may be.  The guy that succeeded Vitellius, known as Vespasian, managed to stay on the throne for 10 years, die of natural causes and be succeeded by his son Titus, who also died of natural…

A Brief History On December 22, 1965, one more bit of personal freedom went the way of the passenger pigeon when a 70 mph speed limit was set on all British rural roads.  Prior to this law, there had been no speed limit in Great Britain, a country that had the most cars per mile of road than any other country in the world. Digging Deeper Before Anglophiles get all upset, this article is not a slam on the island of Great Britain or the country known as the United Kingdom.  It is merely a lamentation of some past glory that seems lost forever. A while…

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