Ridley's Believe It Or Not—June 26, 2014: Today is hopefully the day the U.S. gets at least a tie against Germany in the World Cup and advances. Hope you are in full summer enjoyment mode and enjoy these holidays, factoids, and quotes from the JFK’s Ich bin ein Berliner speech with a smile on your face and your spoon in a chocolate pudding.
1. International Day Against Drug Abuse And Illicit Trafficking—a UN holiday observed since 1988 to promote efforts to reduce drug abuse and illegal sales, the value of which in 2007 was estimated to be over $300 billion—no wonder the cartels are killing each other in Mexico and why there is a growing trend to legalize marijuana.
2. International Day Of Support For The Victims Of Torture—another UN holiday observed since 1998 to express solidarity with and remembrance of the victims of torture which contrary to popular belief still exists today in the world often under the euphemism “enhanced interrogation.”
3. Beauticians’ Day—honoring the hair stylists, manicurists and pedicurists and a good reason to see one today although make sure their tools used in a pedicure or manicure have been properly sterilized to avoid being exposed to bacteria from the prior customers.
4. National Chocolate Pudding Day—celebrating another great desert that no one in their right mind could turn down unless on a starvation diet.
On this day in:
a. 1963 President Kennedy visited West Berlin 22 months after the Berlin Wall had been erected and gave one of most notable speeches “Ich bin ein Berliner.”
b. 1974 the first Universal Product Code was scanned for the first time to sell a package of Wrigley’s chewing gum at the Marsh Supermarket in Troy, Ohio.
c. 2003 the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in the case of Lawrence v. Texas that gender based laws prohibiting sodomy were unconstitutional.
In Kennedy’s own words: “Two thousand years ago, the proudest boast was civis romanus sum ["I am a Roman citizen"]. Today, in the world of freedom, the proudest boast is "Ich bin ein Berliner!"... All free men, wherever they may live, are citizens of Berlin, and therefore, as a free man, I take pride in the words "Ich bin ein Berliner!" He also added in response to those believing it was possible to work with the Soviets, Lass' sie nach Berlin kommen" ["Let them come to Berlin"] Unlike the current occupant of the White House JFK’s actions were just as forceful in foreign policy as his speeches.
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© June 26, 2014 Michael P. Ridley aka the Alaskanpoet