Tuesday, September 01, 2020

Today -100: September 1, 1920: Of take-backs, innate modesty, party-poopers, and suspended actresses

The runaway members of the Tennessee House of Representatives have returned from Alabama and force a vote to expunge the record of the ratification of the 19th Amendment. The House votes 47 to 24, with 20 not present, The vote is legally meaningless, since the US Constitution makes no provision for “backsies.” In 1870 the NY Legislature attempted to take back its ratification of the 15th Amendment.

Gov. Cox has pointed out that the Republican platform showed no pride in the US having won the war. Teddy Roosevelt Jr. responds that that’s because it’s “not in good taste to praise your own achievements” (he also says it was Republicans that fought the war). The NYT comments that “It is well known that the innate modesty of that [Republican] party has always prevented it from mentioning its part in either the Civil War or the Spanish War. And boasting has ever been peculiarly abhorrent to a Roosevelt. Furthermore, the Republicans at Chicago were so absorbed in denouncing that they had no time or strength left for commending anybody – not even our soldiers. The great task of the platform was to bury, not to praise.”

Armed men raid a fancy-dress ball in Dublin, for the purpose of ordering British military officers out, as Irish people are not supposed to be consorting with the army of occupation. They also order ladies out who they think are dressed too scantily.

France and Belgium drop the idea of a mutual-defense treaty because of a cabinet crisis in Belgium. There will instead be a less formal non-binding military agreement.

Babe Ruth is suing to prevent the commercial showing of films of him playing baseball, citing the... Civil Rights Act?  The defendants say he is a public figure, just like the president, so he’s news. (He will lose.)

Actress Emily Marceau testifies against Metro Film Corp director Smythe Addison, who is charged with disorderly conduct. She had previously #MeToo’ed him and he retaliated during filming. She was hoisted on wire for a stunt scene involving fire and while she was suspended in the air he called a lunch break and went off with the crew for 2½ hours.

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