Fifty-one years ago today, at 1:20 am, six police officers arrived at the double doors of Stonewall Inn and announced, "Police! We're taking the place!" There had been a rumor that a raid would take place, but it was much later than any raid in the past. There were 205 people in the bar that night, including two undercover police officers already there. The lights were turned on, the music stopped, and the police called for backup.
Wednesday, June 28, 2023
Wednesday, June 21, 2023
Monday, June 19, 2023
"The people of Texas are informed that, in accordance with a proclamation from the Executive of the United States, 'all slaves are free.'"
Though the proclamation would be mailed and telegraphed across the country, there would be parts of the Confederacy that would refuse manumission, that is, they would refuse to free their enslaved people despite the order. Texas was one such state. The enslaved would not be freed until over two years later, when the Union army reached Galveston. Union Army General Gordon Granger would announce the proclamation above, informing Texas that all enslaved were free.
“You shall count seven weeks of years, seven times seven years, so that the time of the seven weeks of years shall give you forty-nine years. Then you shall sound the loud trumpet on the tenth day of the seventh month. On the Day of Atonement you shall sound the trumpet throughout all your land. And you shall consecrate the fiftieth year, and proclaim liberty throughout the land to all its inhabitants. It shall be a jubilee for you, when each of you shall return to his property and each of you shall return to his clan. That fiftieth year shall be a jubilee for you; in it you shall neither sow nor reap what grows of itself nor gather the grapes from the undressed vines. For it is a jubilee. It shall be holy to you. You may eat the produce of the field."
"January 1, 1863
By the President of the United States of America:
Whereas, on the twenty-second day of September, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-two, a proclamation was issued by the President of the United States, containing, among other things, the following, to wit:
"That on the first day of January, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-three, all persons held as slaves within any State or designated part of a State, the people whereof shall then be in rebellion against the United States, shall be then, thenceforward, and forever free; and the Executive Government of the United States, including the military and naval authority thereof, will recognize and maintain the freedom of such persons, and will do no act or acts to repress such persons, or any of them, in any efforts they may make for their actual freedom.
"That the Executive will, on the first day of January aforesaid, by proclamation, designate the States and parts of States, if any, in which the people thereof, respectively, shall then be in rebellion against the United States; and the fact that any State, or the people thereof, shall on that day be, in good faith, represented in the Congress of the United States by members chosen thereto at elections wherein a majority of the qualified voters of such State shall have participated, shall, in the absence of strong countervailing testimony, be deemed conclusive evidence that such State, and the people thereof, are not then in rebellion against the United States."
Now, therefore I, Abraham Lincoln, President of the United States, by virtue of the power in me vested as Commander-in-Chief, of the Army and Navy of the United States in time of actual armed rebellion against the authority and government of the United States, and as a fit and necessary war measure for suppressing said rebellion, do, on this first day of January, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-three, and in accordance with my purpose so to do publicly proclaimed for the full period of one hundred days, from the day first above mentioned, order and designate as the States and parts of States wherein the people thereof respectively, are this day in rebellion against the United States, the following, to wit:
Arkansas, Texas, Louisiana, (except the Parishes of St. Bernard, Plaquemines, Jefferson, St. John, St. Charles, St. James Ascension, Assumption, Terrebonne, Lafourche, St. Mary, St. Martin, and Orleans, including the City of New Orleans) Mississippi, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, and Virginia, (except the forty-eight counties designated as West Virginia, and also the counties of Berkley, Accomac, Northampton, Elizabeth City, York, Princess Ann, and Norfolk, including the cities of Norfolk and Portsmouth[)], and which excepted parts, are for the present, left precisely as if this proclamation were not issued.
And by virtue of the power, and for the purpose aforesaid, I do order and declare that all persons held as slaves within said designated States, and parts of States, are, and henceforward shall be free; and that the Executive government of the United States, including the military and naval authorities thereof, will recognize and maintain the freedom of said persons.
And I hereby enjoin upon the people so declared to be free to abstain from all violence, unless in necessary self-defence; and I recommend to them that, in all cases when allowed, they labor faithfully for reasonable wages.
And I further declare and make known, that such persons of suitable condition, will be received into the armed service of the United States to garrison forts, positions, stations, and other places, and to man vessels of all sorts in said service.
And upon this act, sincerely believed to be an act of justice, warranted by the Constitution, upon military necessity, I invoke the considerate judgment of mankind, and the gracious favor of Almighty God.
In witness whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the seal of the United States to be affixed.
Done at the City of Washington, this first day of January, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty three, and of the Independence of the United States of America the eighty-seventh.
By the President: ABRAHAM LINCOLN
WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State."
Sunday, June 18, 2023
A father acts on behalf of his children by working, providing, intervening, struggling, and suffering for them. In so doing, he really stands in their place. He is not an isolated individual, but incorporates the selves of several people in his own self."
Friday, June 16, 2023
If you recognize a drawing of Spider-man, it's likely one of two people. Ross Andru, whose work was often used in licensing. Or John Romita, Sr.
Romita wasn't the first person to draw Spider-man. Instead, he would follow Steve Ditko following his abrupt departure after issue #38 of The Amazing Spider-Man. Romita would take over as the penciler of Amazing with #39, starting a run that would encompass over 50 covers and an unbroken run of story art for 56 issues. A run which would cover some of the ground-breaking Spider-Man stories, like the death of Gwen Stacy.
Though Romita never felt comfortable on Spider-Man, his art would become incredibly linked with the character. He served as the primary penciler for the newspaper strip for the first four years of its publication. He worked on the first intercompany crossover with Superman vs. the Amazing Spider-Man, doing art corrections over Ross Andru's pencils. He would provide the cover for Spider-Man's wedding issue, and several spot issues to come."For me, John's Spidey is a design of such perfection and beauty so as to be simply the greatest-looking character in comics, by his hand."
Romita passed away in his sleep on June 12, 2023, at the age of 93. While his presence will be missed, his art and his heart will live on, inspiring us to be heroic, to be human.
Wednesday, June 14, 2023
Monday, June 12, 2023
Chief Justice Warren wrote the majority opinion, finding that "the freedom to marry, or not marry, a person of another race resides within the individual, and cannot be infringed by the State."