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Thurgood Marshall

November 14, 2019 in History

By History.com Editors

Thurgood Marshall — perhaps best known as the first African-American Supreme Court justice — played an instrumental role in promoting racial equality during the civil rights movement and beyond. As a practicing attorney, Marshall argued a record-breaking 32 cases before the Supreme Court, winning 29 of them. In fact, Marshall represented and won more cases before the high court than any other American. During his 24-year term as Supreme Court justice, Marshall’s passionate support for individual and civil rights guided his policies and decisions. Most historians recount him as an influential figure in shaping social policies and upholding laws to protect minorities.

Early Life and Education

Thurgood Marshall was born on July 2, 1908, in Baltimore, Maryland. His father, William Marshall, was a railroad porter, and his mother, Norma, was a teacher.

After he completed high school in 1925, Marshall attended Lincoln University in Chester County, Pennsylvania. Just before he graduated, he married his first wife, Vivian “Buster” Burey.

In 1930, Marshall applied to the University of Maryland School of Law but was rejected because he was black. He then decided to attend Howard University Law School, where he became a protégé of the well-known dean, Charles Hamilton Houston, who encouraged students to use the law as a means for social transformation.

In 1933, Marshall received his degree and was ranked first in his class. After graduation from Howard, Marshall opened a private practice law firm in Baltimore.

Life as a Lawyer

In 1935, Marshall’s first major court victory came in Murray v. Pearson, when he, alongside his mentor Houston, successfully sued the University of Maryland for denying a black applicant admission to its law school because of his race.

Shortly after this legal success, Marshall became a staff lawyer for the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and was eventually named chief of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund.

Throughout the 1940s and 1950s, Marshall became recognized as a one of the top attorneys in the United States, winning 29 of the 32 cases he argued before the Supreme Court.

Some of Marshall’s notable cases included:

  • Chambers v. Florida (1940): Marshall successfully defended four convicted black men who were coerced by police into confessing to murder.
  • Smith v. Allwright (1944): In this decision, the …read more

    Source: HISTORY

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Oliver Cromwell

November 14, 2019 in History

By History.com Editors

Oliver Cromwell was a political and military leader in 17th century England who served as Lord Protector, or head of state, of the Commonwealth of England, Scotland and Ireland for a five-year-period until his death in 1658. Cromwell was known for being ruthless in battle, and he twice led successful efforts to remove the British monarch from power. Called a dictator by some — including future British Prime Minister Winston Churchill — Cromwell, a devout Puritan, was particularly intolerant of Catholics and Quakers, though he is also credited by others for helping to lead Great Britain toward a constitutional government.

Cromwell’s Early Life

Cromwell was born in 1599 in Huntingdon, near Cambridge, in England. The Cromwells had been a wealthy family for generations, and were part of the landed gentry in the region. He was descended on his father’s side from Thomas Cromwell, a minister of King Henry VIII.

Like most children born in the country at the time, Cromwell was baptized in the Church of England. At 21, he married Elizabeth Bourchier, daughter of a wealthy merchant family. His new wife’s family were active in the Puritan church, and it is thought that this may have prompted Cromwell to join the sect in the 1630s.

The Cromwells had nine children, though three died young, which was not unusual at the time. Their son Richard, who succeeded his father as Lord Protector, was born in 1626.

Health and Financial Woes

Cromwell was first elected to Parliament, representing Huntingdon, in 1628. Though this marked the start of his political career, his success in the halls of power was not matched in other aspects of his life.

In 1631, for example, Cromwell was forced to sell much of his land holdings in Huntingdon following a dispute with local officials. In addition, he was reportedly treated for melancholy, or depression, at this time.

His tenure in Parliament was also short, as a result of King Charles I and his decision to suspend the legislative body in 1629. Cromwell would return to government in 1640, when Charles I was essentially forced to reconvene Parliament following a rebellion against his rule in Scotland.

By then, Cromwell had become a devout Puritan, telling family that he had been a “sinner” and was newly reborn. Like most Puritans, he believed that Catholic influence tainted the Church of England, and that it must be removed.

Military Career

Charles …read more

Source: HISTORY

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Why the Hawks Are Wrong about China Too

November 14, 2019 in Economics

By Doug Bandow

Doug Bandow

Some opponents of U.S. interventions in the Middle East don’t mind endless wars. They just think America needs to undertake a genuine Asian “pivot” or “rebalance” to counter China. For them, it is only a matter of which enemy must be fought.

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Certainly the Sino-American relationship has become more fractious, with the Trump administration plotting geopolitical as well as economic confrontation. Every new dispute seems to lead to calls in Congress for additional sanctions. Some policymakers imagine a new Cold War and perhaps even military conflict.

Both at home and abroad, the government of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) is doing much harm. However, confrontation for the sake of confrontation, seemingly Capitol Hill’s policy toward numerous nations, is counterproductive. Challenging the PRC will achieve little if Washington does not have clear and realistic objectives.

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China is an ancient civilization, spurred onward and upward today by lingering anger and resentment caused by centuries of oppression and humiliation. The formation of the PRC 70 years ago inaugurated a new era. Nevertheless, for the first three decades or so, China’s potential was merely theoretical: Mao Zedong and the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) were perpetually at war with their own people. Once Mao passed from the scene in 1976, however, Beijing moved onto a path of growth. To the good, hundreds of millions of people escaped immiserating poverty. To the bad, a still-authoritarian regime gained strength and resources.

The PRC’s sharpest critics have developed a steadily expanding number of grievances on myriad topics: trade practices, North Korea, religious liberty, domestic economic policy, Hong Kong, regional territorial disputes, mistreatment of the Uighurs, other human rights abuses, Chinese overseas investment, intellectual property theft, Taiwan, investment access, discrimination against foreign firms, cyber warfare, and more. The issues are serious and the list is daunting.

Demanding satisfaction on all of them guarantees failure. It is worth considering how Americans would respond to a China that made a similar set of demands, with threats of confrontation, retaliation, …read more

Source: OP-EDS

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10 Native American Inventions Commonly Used Today

November 14, 2019 in History

By Patrick J. Kiger

From kayaks to contraceptives to pain relievers, Native Americans developed key innovations long before Columbus reached America’s shores.

From the tip of South America to the Arctic, Native Americans developed scores of innovations—from kayaks, protective goggles and baby bottles to birth control, genetically modified food crops and analgesic medications—that enabled them to survive and flourish wherever they lived.

In fact, early European explorers who reached the Western Hemisphere were apparently so impressed by the achievements of the people they encountered that they The technology didn’t show up in European medicine until the 1850s, when Scottish physician Alexander Wood began using needles to inject morphine to relieve pain.

Hammocks

Caribbean Indians invented the hammock as a lightweight bed for hot climate.

When Christopher Columbus landed in the Caribbean, he found natives resting in hammocks, a bed made from cotton netting and suspended between two trees or poles, according to his letters. Hammocks were so comfortable and convenient that European sailors began sleeping in them on merchant and naval ships, according to Indians of North America.

Oral Contraceptives

The Shoshone and Navajo tribes used stoneseed, also known as Columbia Puccoon (Lithospermum ruderale) as an oral contraceptive, long before the pharmaceutical industry developed birth control pills.

Mouthwash

Various tribes in Northeastern North America used the wildflower goldthread (Coptis trifolia) as a mouthwash and a treatment for oral pain.

…read more

Source: HISTORY

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FDA Should Make Anti-HIV Drug over the Counter

November 14, 2019 in Economics

By Jeffrey A. Singer

Jeffrey A. Singer

Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar announced last week a federal suit against Gilead Sciences, makers of pre-exposure prophylaxis against HIV, also known as PrEP, claiming the company is infringing on government patents while selling these prescription-only drugs at high prices. The case could devolve into a protracted legal battle hinging on arcane patent law and the validity of government patents.

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But both parties could avoid that if the Food and Drug Administration would simply make PrEP and post-exposure prophylaxis, also known as PEP, available over-the-counter.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports sexual activity is the predominant cause of HIV transmission in the U.S. Studies show PrEP can reduce risk of HIV transmission from sex by 99 percent, and reduces HIV transmission from needle sharing by 74 percent when taken daily. PEP is also effective in preventing HIV transmission, but must be taken within 72 hours of exposure and continued for 28 days, and should be followed by repeated HIV testing from a health care provider.

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Experts recommend that regular users of PrEP get semiannual blood tests to check their kidney function, because long-term use can cause renal impairment. But that doesn’t mean the drug shouldn’t be available over the counter. People taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs long-term, such as ibuprofen, can harm their kidneys and should probably periodically check their kidney function. And people on long-term acetaminophen can harm their liver. These drugs are already available over the counter.

In October, recognizing the need to make these drugs more available, California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed into law a bill allowing pharmacists to prescribe PrEP and PEP. While the FDA decides whether a drug is classified as prescription-only or over the counter, states get to determine the scope of practice of their licensed health care practitioners. State legislatures have increasingly expanded pharmacists’ scope of practice, allowing them to prescribe a prescription-only drug, as a means of working around the federal …read more

Source: OP-EDS