this day in crime history: may 30, 1937

mdm1937

On this date in 1937, ten unarmed demonstrators were shot and killed by Chicago Police outside the Republic Steel mill. The demonstrators were members of the Steel Workers Organizing Committee (SWOC) of the Congress of Industrial Organizations. They were on strike against Republic and other steel companies that had refused to sign a labor agreement similar to one reached with U.S. Steel, the largest of the American steel companies.

On Memorial Day, hundreds gathered at SWOC headquarters and prepared to march on Republic Steel. As they neared the mill, their path was blocked by members of the Chicago Police Department. The protestors were told to turn back. When they refused, the police answered with tear gas, billy clubs and bullets. Ten of the protestors were killed, dozens more were injured.

A coroner’s jury would later rule the deaths as “justifiable homicide.”

If you’d like to judge for yourself whether deadly force was justified, check out this video of the incident. The violence starts about five and a half minutes into the video. Not a great moment in Chicago Police history.

Further reading:

Wikipedia: Memorial Day Massacre of 1937

Chicagoist – Flashback: Memorial Day Massacre of 1937

’twas the day before Thanksgiving

Tomorrow, as all of my readers in the U.S. know, is Thanksgiving. The day after is known as Black Friday, the biggest day of the year for retail businesses. But many of you may not know about Busy Wednesday. That’s what thousands of employers call the Wednesday before Thanksgiving.

Study after study has shown that the day before Thanksgiving is the most productive work day of the year. A survey of people with jobs (and people who know people with jobs, as well as people who’ve watched TV shows about people with jobs) showed that workers are more focused on Busy Wednesday than they usually are. Scientists studying this phenomenon hypothesize that knowing that the following day will end with a huge meal and hours of watching football helps people prioritize better and stimulates the parts of the brain that are responsible for motivation. It may also cause the release of neurotransmitters that send a message to the body to "git r done."

I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who decided to go to work today, rather than taking the day off. Your dedication, focus, motivation and productivity are duly noted and greatly appreciated. Feel free to have an extra piece of pie tomorrow to reward yourself. Hell, have two extra pieces, you earned it.

Note: The preceding is complete bullshit. Busy Wednesday is purely a product of the author’s imagination. All studies, surveys and scientists cited in the preceding were made up out of thin air. Any resemblance to reality is purely coincidental, counter-intuitive, and completely impossible. That being said, you should still have all the pie you want tomorrow. Even if you don’t celebrate Thanksgiving. Pie is good.