April 22, 2006

Today in history - Oklahoma!

1864 - The United States Congress, under leadership of radical Republicans, passes the Coinage Act of 1864 which mandates that the inscription "In God We Trust" be placed on all coins minted as United States currency.

After all, "god-fearing patriots" were at war against the "rebel hordes" of the South, "who do not know what it is to be an American," and must therefore suffer "the next thing to annihilation." (Maj. George W. Nichols, staff officer of Gen. Sherman)

God's name was freely invoked on both sides of the senseless slaughter, even as young men from the North were being drafted to invade the Southern states and "annihilate" their Southern brothers -- in the name of God and country:

"There is a class of people at the South who must be exterminated before there can be peace in the land.... In the record of great wars we read of vast armies marching through an enemy's country, carrying death and destruction in their path; of villages burned, cities pillaged, a tribe or a nation swept out of existence.... History, however, will be searched in vain for a parallel to the scathing and destructive effect of the Invasion of the Carolinas." (Gen. William T. Sherman, describing the historical "shock and awe" campaign directed by "Honest Abe.")

The same "Grand Ole Party" that supported the annihilation of their own countrymen in the 1860's -- God was on their side, so the ends justified the means -- has not changed much. How many times in recent days have we heard Bush apologists like John McCain, among others, compare George W. Bush to Abraham Lincoln? And why not?

Republicans learned the lesson well: When the history books are written, winning -- whatever it takes -- is all that matters.

1889 - Oklahoma land rush: President Benjamin Harrison opens Oklahoma to white settlement.

1915 - German forces shock Allied soldiers along the western front by firing more than 150 tons of lethal chlorine gas against two French colonial divisions at Ypres, Belgium. This was the first major gas attack by the Germans, and it devastated the Allied line.

1934 - John Dillinger's gang shoots their way out of an FBI ambush outside the Little Bohemia Hunting Lodge in northern Wisconsin. The FBI accidentally kills one innocent bystander and injures two others in the humiliating debacle.

1970 - Millions of Americans concerned about the environment observed the first Earth Day.

Photos: Some of my family who were early settlers to
Oklahoma Territory


With apologies to my Oklahoma cousins and blondes everywhere:

Two blondes living in Oklahoma were sitting on the porch swing, looking at a full moon and thinking of their Florida cousins. One blonde says to the other, "Which do you think is farther away......... Florida or the moon?"

The other blonde turns and says, "Helloooooooo, can you see Florida???"


Missouri Mule said...

Hey, that fellow by the horse really does look like George. Ain't that something?!? I hope it's that side of the fambly. :)

aikane said...

More'n likely, Kuz'n Jim would've kicked the pretender cowboy's butt all the way back to Connecticut -- especially after he caught W. trying to milk his pony. :-)