Sunday, August 07, 2011

Today -100: August 7, 1911: Of crap shooters, slavery, trolleys, and icebergs

Haiti’s revolutionary army proclaims as president one Gen. Cincinnatus Leconte, the great-grandson of a previous Emperor of Haiti. Spoiler alert: contrary to his name, he did not return to his plow, but was blowed up in 1912.

Topic Sentence of the Day -100: A story headlined “Negro is Killed By His Own Pistol” begins “Moses Hill, a negro [okay, we get it already: he’s a negro], who had a reputation as a crap shooter, met his death by his own hand as a result of that talent yesterday morning.” No, “crap shooter” doesn’t mean he was a really bad shot but rather that three white men he beat playing craps decided to beat the crap out of him and he drew a gun. My, the word crap is so versatile, isn’t it?

Mississippi’s Democratic primary (all-white, of course) last week chose former governor James Vardaman as candidate for US Senate. Many black people are now fleeing the state, believing that when he is elected, slavery will be restored. To be fair to Vardaman – the white supremacist shit – he only advocates repealing the 14th and 15th Amendments, not the 13th.

Why are street car strikes always so violent? The one in Des Moines has ended because a court ordered the reinstatement of the conductor whose dismissal was the cause of the strike, but another one in Brooklyn/Coney Island features the usual wrecking of cars, beating of scabs and terrorizing of passengers. The street car operators want an increase in pay from 23¢ an hour to 25¢.

Interesting details of the Columbia’s collision with the iceberg.

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