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May 12: ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY

May 12, 2022 By Brooklyn Eagle History
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ON THIS DAY IN 1937, the Brooklyn Daily Eagle reported, “WASHINGTON (U.P.) — Congressional opponents of judiciary reorganization suggested the recall of Ambassador William E. Dodd today because of his letter to several senators defending President Roosevelt’s Supreme Court plan and warning against the danger of dictatorship. Demands that Dodd name a man who had, Dodd said he had been told, a billion dollars to back establishment of a dictatorship in the United States were made by senators aroused by the letter. ‘We ought to bring Mr. Dodd home from Germany to give him an opportunity to disclose any information he has to the Senate,” Senator Van Nuys (D., Ind.), foe of the court plan, said … Dodd said that he had been informed there was a certain American with a billion dollars seeking to create ‘and control’ a dictatorial government in this country along the Huey Long style. The president, he maintained, was seeking to provide safeguards against such an occurrence.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1945, the Eagle published a letter which said, “Listening to the swan song of Mayor LaGuardia last Sunday, over the city radio, I laughed heartily. ‘I could run on a laundry ticket and be re-elected,’ he shouts. I really think that he believes he ‘can fool all of the people all of the time.’ Bouquet after bouquet he hurled at himself and his incomparable administration. We must say ‘well done’ to some of the things that the mayor has done during his 12 years incumbency. It would indeed be too bad if His Honor had not accomplished something good during the past 12 years. That is what we put him on the job for. Taken in its entirety, however, I think his Sunday broadcast announcing that he would not run again, because nobody has asked him to do so, was about the biggest conglomeration of nonsense and exaggerated egotism that I have ever listened to. The mayor has never exhibited much liking for Brooklynites. He can’t kid us along. We have a habit of giving him the horse laugh — especially about Election Day. In short, we don’t consider him the indispensable man, and he does not agree with us.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1947, the Eagle reported, “LAKE SUCCESS (U.P.) — Arab and Jewish spokesmen clashed bitterly at the United Nations meeting today with the Arabs threatening to walk out if Palestine doesn’t get independence and the Jews charging the independence issue was ‘loading the dice’ against them. Syrian delegate Faris El-Khouri flatly told the General Assembly’s Political Committee that ‘the Syrian government is unable to acquiesce in any other solution’ except to instruct the UN Palestine Commission to study immediate independence. El-Khouri blasted Zionism as a ‘fatal dream’ and stormed that the Arabs will ‘never permit it to succeed.’ Jewish Agency spokesman Mershe Shertok demanded that the UN bar Great Britain from the Palestine Inquiry Commission and admit an Arab state only if the Jews are also given representation on the body.”

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ON THIS DAY IN 1954, the Eagle published a letter which said, “Senator Homer Ferguson of Michigan has introduced a measure (Senate Joint Resolution 126) which would add the words ‘under God’ to the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag. The pledge would then be: ‘I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States and to the Republic for which it stands, one nation indivisible, under God, with liberty and justice for all.’ Senator Ferguson said: ‘I believe this modification of the pledge is important because it highlights one of the real differences between the free world and the Communist world, namely, belief in God. Our nation is founded on a fundamental belief in God and the first and most important reason for the existence of our government is to protect the God-given rights of our citizens. Spiritual values are every bit as important to the defense and safety of our nation as are military and economic values.’ Those in favor of the change should write to Senator Ferguson in Washington and their own senators and congressmen.”

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Vanessa A. Williams
Arnold Turner/Invision/AP

NOTABLE PEOPLE BORN ON THIS DAY include Oscar-winning composer Burt Bacharach, who was born in 1928; baseball player and manager Felipe Alou, who was born in 1935; “Slap Shot” star Lindsay Crouse, who was born in 1948; Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Steve Winwood (Traffic), who was born in 1948;

Steve Winwood
Greg Allen/Invision/AP

“Babylon 5” star Bruce Boxleitner, who was born in 1950; “The Usual Suspects” star Gabriel Byrne, who was born in 1950; “Everybody Wants You” singer Billy Squier, who was born in 1950; “Pulp Fiction” star Ving Rhames, who was born in 1959; “Kids in the Hall” star Bruce McCulloch, who was born in 1961; “Soul Food” star Vanessa A. Williams, who was born in Brooklyn in 1963; “The Facts of Life” star Kim Fields, who was born in 1969; “Pump Up the Volume” star Samantha Mathis, who was born in Brooklyn in 1970; Oscar-winning actor Rami Malek, who was born in 1981; and “Lost” star Malcolm David Kelley, who was born in 1992.

Rami Malek
Evan Agostini/Invision/AP

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A TIME TO HEAL: Florence Nightingale was born on this day in 1820. The English nurse and public health activist contributed perhaps more than any other single person to the development of modern nursing procedures and the dignity of nursing as a profession. She first came to prominence for tending to injured soldiers during the 1853-56 Crimean War. In 1859, she published “Notes on Nursing: What it is and What it is Not,” and the following year she founded the Nightingale Training School for Nurses. She died in 1910.

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BORN AT THE RIGHT TIME: Yogi Berra was born in this day in 1925. A veteran of the D-Day invasion, the slugging catcher joined the N.Y. Yankees in 1946 and won three MVP awards during his 19-year career. He holds the record for most World Series championships, with 10 as a player and three as a coach. As a manager, he won pennants with the Yankees (1964) and Mets (1973). He was almost as well known for his humorous “Yogi-isms,” such as “Ninety percent of the game is half mental.” He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1972 and died on Sept. 22, 2015, the 69th anniversary of his major league debut.

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Special thanks to “Chase’s Calendar of Events” and Brooklyn Public Library.

Quotable:

“For the sick it is important to have the best.”
— Florence Nightingale, who was born on this day in 1820


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