Monday, April 12, 2021

Today -100: April 12, 1921: Of distinguished kisses, crackatoos, cows, and smoking in Iowa

The NY State Senate steamrolls through a bill for movie censorship, with only Republican votes in favor. A censorship board can ban films which are “obscene, indecent, immoral, inhuman, sacrilegious or of such character that their exhibition would tend to corrupt morals or incite to crime.” Inhuman? Sen. John Boylan (D) notes that the board would have the job of standardizing the screen kiss. “Should it last a minute or only thirty seconds to pass muster,” he asks. And should it distinguish between kisses between a mother and her son, a wife and a husband returning from war or from a long trip. Jimmy Walker accuses Sen. Clayton Lusk, the originator of the bill, of being only a step beyond the crackatoo who wants a 20th Amendment abolishing religious liberty. I only include that remark because of the word “crackatoo,” which is new to me. Walker also uses the word bunk, which outside the columns of Charles Pierce is too seldom seen these days.

The former kaiserin of Germany, Augusta Victoria of Schleswig-Holstein, Wilhelm’s wife, dies at 62.

Headline of the Day -100:  

Georgia plantation owner John Williams is indicted for the murders of 8 more of his black peonage workers. Also indicted are his 3 sons and the black employee who carried out some of the murders on Williams’ orders. The sons are in the wind.

Cigarettes are legalized in Iowa.

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