2007—Phyllis Schlafly explains to Bates students that a married woman “has consented to sex, and I don’t think you can call it rape.”
2003—Two U.S.A.F. A-10 “Warthogs” mistakenly strafe British tanks in Iraq. One soldier is KIA.
2003—“The enemy we’re fighting [in Iraq],” General William S. Wallace admits, “is different from the one we’d war-gamed against.”
1979—After a stuck valve dumps too much coolant, an emergency cooling system kicks in, but it’s overridden by operators who fail to see a hidden indicator light. The nuclear reactor core at Three Mile Island in Pennsylvania partially melts, releasing 43K curies.
1967—The RAF bombs the Torrey Canyon to mitigate an oil spill in the Channel; mostly they miss.
1920—On Palm Sunday, 38 tornadoes in eight states kill 380 people.
1904—Western Miners Federation president Charlie Moyer is arrested in Colorado for flag desecration. He’s so ticked he helps found the IWW.
1884—A mob in Cincinnati tries to lynch a white murderer. Thwarted, the mob grows to 10,000. Gunbattles rage. Order is restored by the State Militia: 56 dead and 300 wounded.
1757—“The day will be hard,” says Robert-François Damiens as he’s hauled from his cell. For trying to kill Louis XV, his arms and legs are pulled off by horses. His still-living torso is then burned at the stake.