April 18, 2013 archive

Apr 18

On This Day In History April 18

Cross posted from The Stars Hollow Gazette

This is your morning Open Thread. Pour your favorite beverage and review the past and comment on the future.

Find the past “On This Day in History” here.

April 18 is the 108th day of the year (109th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 257 days remaining until the end of the year.

On this day in 1775, British troops march out of Boston on a mission to confiscate the American arsenal at Concord and to capture Patriot leaders Samuel Adams and John Hancock, known to be hiding at Lexington. As the British departed, Boston Patriots Paul Revere and William Dawes set out on horseback from the city to warn Adams and Hancock and rouse the Minutemen.

By 1775, tensions between the American colonies and the British government had approached the breaking point, especially in Massachusetts, where Patriot leaders formed a shadow revolutionary government and trained militias to prepare for armed conflict with the British troops occupying Boston. In the spring of 1775, General Thomas Gage, the British governor of Massachusetts, received instructions from Great Britain to seize all stores of weapons and gunpowder accessible to the American insurgents. On April 18, he ordered British troops to march against Concord and Lexington.

The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere

On the night of April 18-19, 1775, just hours before the battles of Lexington and Concord, Revere performed his “Midnight Ride”. He and William Dawes were instructed by Dr. Joseph Warren to ride from Boston to Lexington to warn John Hancock and Samuel Adams of the movements of the British Army, which was beginning a march from Boston to Lexington, ostensibly to arrest Hancock and Adams and seize the weapons stores in Concord.

The British army (the King’s “regulars”) had been stationed in Boston since the ports were closed in the wake of the Boston Tea Party, and was under constant surveillance by Revere and other patriots as word began to spread that they were planning a move. On the night of April 18, 1775, the army began its move across the Charles River toward Lexington, and the Sons of Liberty immediately went into action. At about 11 pm, Revere was sent by Dr. Warren across the Charles River to Charlestown, on the opposite shore, where he could begin a ride to Lexington, while Dawes was sent the long way around, via the Boston Neck and the land route to Lexington.

In the days before April 18, Revere had instructed Robert Newman, the sexton of the Old North Church, to send a signal by lantern to alert colonists in Charlestown as to the movements of the troops when the information became known. In what is well known today by the phrase “one if by land, two if by sea”, one lantern in the steeple would signal the army’s choice of the land route, while two lanterns would signal the route “by water” across the Charles River. This was done to get the message through to Charlestown in the event that both Revere and Dawes were captured. Newman and Captain John Pulling momentarily held two lanterns in the Old North Church as Revere himself set out on his ride, to indicate that the British soldiers were in fact crossing the Charles River that night. Revere rode a horse lent to him by John Larkin, Deacon of the Old North Church.

There were other riders that night besides Dawes, including a woman, Sybil Ludington. The other men were Israel Bissel and  Samuel Prescott. a doctor who happened to be in Lexington “returning from a lady friend’s house at the awkward hour of 1 a.m.”

Apr 18

Empire of the Gun

Adapted from Rant of the Week at The Stars Hollow Gazette

Empire of the Gun

The Senate preserves America’s right to sell weapons to international terrorists and drug lords.

Senate votes 53-46 to stop US from joining UN Arms Trade Treaty

by Ramsey Cox, The Hill

In the last batch of amendment votes to the budget, the Senate voted on several foreign policy proposals.

Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.) introduced an amendment that would prevent the United States from entering into the United Nations Arms Trade Treaty in order to uphold the Second Amendment. His amendment passed on a 53-46 vote.

Republicans have been critical of President Obama’s decision to consider the treaty, although Obama has said he would not vote for anything that would violate the Second Amendment.

The U.N. Arms Trade Treaty would regulate international arms sales. Negotiations end on March 28.

Apr 18

Carol the Heffalump is shot

Apparently it was a drive by shooting.

Ringling Bros circus elephant recuperates from Mississippi shooting

Adam Gabbatt, The Guardian

Monday 15 April 2013 13.59 EDT

The Asian elephant was touring with Ringling Bros and Barnum & Bailey Circus in Tupelo, when she was shot near the shoulder while relaxing in her enclosure. A suspect was witnessed fleeing the scene, and multiple agencies have contributed money in a bid to track him or her down.



“It was surreal, I just couldn’t believe it,” Carden said of the moment she realised Carol had been wounded. “I saw a hole in my elephant, and a trickle of blood running down her leg, and she was just standing there like nothing had happened.”



The Asian elephant is listed as endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature and there are believed to be fewer than 50,000 left in the wild.

Carol has entertained crowds across the US during her career, but Carden said the elephant had no known enemies. Although two other elephants in the enclosure escaped unharmed, Carden ruled out the possibility of the gunman having a grudge against Carol specifically.

Apr 18

Springer Mountain to Mount Katahdin

Republicans pull plug on Mark Sanford

By ALEX ISENSTADT, Politico

4/17/13 1:47 PM EDT

Blindsided by news that Sanford’s ex-wife has accused him of trespassing and concluding he has no plausible path to victory, the National Republican Congressional Committee has decided not to spend more money on Sanford’s behalf ahead of the May 7 special election.



The NRCC’s move comes hours after Tuesday night’s report by the Associated Press that Sanford’s ex-wife, Jenny Sanford, filed a court complaint accusing him of trespassing at her home in early February – which would be a violation of the terms of their divorce agreement.



(T)he news of the alleged trespassing once again thrusts Sanford’s damaged family life to the forefront of the campaign. It threatens to undercut his already shaky support among women, who polls show are unenthusiastic about voting for an admitted adulterer.



And, most dangerous of all, it undermines what had been the driving theme of the ex-governor’s campaign: that he has learned from his personal mistakes and put them behind him.

“The reason this is bad is because it takes all of Sanford’s problems in the past and takes them right into the present,” said one GOP official. “Every dollar that he’s spent reforming his image has been wiped away.”



“It’s an unfortunate reality that divorced couples sometimes have disagreements that spill over into family court,” he said. “I did indeed watch the second half of the Super Bowl at the beach house with our 14 year old son because as a father I didn’t think he should watch it alone. Given she was out of town I tried to reach her beforehand to tell her of the situation that had arisen, and met her at the back steps under the light of my cell phone when she returned and told her what had happened.

“There is always another side to every story, and while I am particularly curious how records that were sealed to avoid the boys dealing with embarrassment are now somehow exposed less than three weeks before this election, I agree with Jenny that the media is no place to debate what is ultimately a family court matter, and out of respect for Jenny and the boys, I’m not going to have any further comment at this time,” Sanford said.

Apr 18

Cartnoon

Apr 18

Late Night Karaoke