The almanac

By United Press International  |  July 2, 2012 at 3:30 AM
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Today is Monday, July 2, the 184th day of 2012 with 182 to follow.

The moon is waxing. Morning stars are Venus, Jupiter, Neptune and Uranus. Evening stars are Mercury, Saturn and Mars.

Those born on this date are under the sign of Cancer. They include German novelist Hermann Hesse in 1877; King Olav V of Norway in 1903; tennis champion Rene Lacoste in 1904; former U.S. Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall in 1908; singer/actor Ken Curtis ("Gunsmoke's" Festus) in 1916; civil rights activist Medgar Evers in 1925; Imelda Marcos, wife of former Philippine President Fernando Marcos, in 1929 (age 83); Dave Thomas, Wendy's fast-food restaurant chain founder, in 1932; actor Polly Holliday and former race car driver Richard Petty, both in 1937 (age 75); actor/director Ron Silver in 1946; writer/actor Larry David in 1947 (age 65); actor Jimmy McNichol in 1961 (age 51); former baseball star Jose Canseco, first to hit 40 home runs and steal 40 bases in the same major league season, in 1964 (age 48) and actor Lindsay Lohan in 1986 (age 26).

On this date in history:

In 1788, it was announced in the U.S. Congress that the new Constitution had been ratified by the required nine states, the ninth being New Hampshire.

In 1839, African slaves being shipped to Cuba revolted and seized the ship Amistad, leading to an eventual end of the African slave market.

In 1881, U.S. President James Garfield was shot by Charles Guiteau, a mentally disturbed office-seeker. Garfield died Sept. 19 and was succeeded by Vice President Chester Arthur.

In 1900, the world's first rigid airship was demonstrated by Ferdinand Graf von Zeppelin in Germany.

In 1917, as many as 75 African-Americans were killed in rioting in St. Louis.

In 1934, 6-year-old Shirley Temple signed a contract with Fox Film Corp. and went on to become one of the biggest movie stars of the day.

In 1937, U.S. aviator Amelia Earhart and navigator Frederick Noonan were reported lost over the Pacific Ocean. They were never found.

In 1962, the first Wal-Mart store opened in Rogers, Ark.

In 1964, U.S. President Lyndon Johnson signed into law the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

In 1974, U.S President Richard Nixon and Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev agreed during a meeting in Yalta on limitations on underground nuclear testing.

In 1976, North and South Vietnam reunited, forming the Socialist Republic of Vietnam.

In 1986, the U.S. Supreme Court endorsed numerical hiring goals for minorities, rejecting the Reagan administration view that affirmative action be limited to proven victims of race discrimination.

In 1990, a stampede in a pedestrian tunnel at the Muslim holy city of Mecca during the annual Hajj killed 1,426 pilgrims.

In 1993, Sheik Omar Abdel Rahmen, whose followers were linked to two bombing plots, was taken into U.S. federal custody.

Also in 1993, South African President F.W de Klerk and African National Congress leader Nelson Mandela announced that South Africa's first election open to all races would be April 27, 1994.

In 1994, the Colombian soccer player who inadvertently scored a goal for the United States, contributing to his team's loss in World Cup competition, was shot to death in Medellin, Colombia.

In 2000, Vicente Fox was elected president of Mexico.

In 2002, American Steve Fossett completed a round-the-world solo flight in a balloon, reaching Queensland in the Australian outback to finish a 13-day, 19,428-mile trip that began in Western Australia.

In 2004, medical reports said post-traumatic stress disorder was appearing in 1-in-6 U.S. soldiers returning from Iraq.

In 2006, Israeli bombs destroyed the Gaza City offices of the Palestinian Authority prime minister, kicking off a month of violent attacks against Palestinian militants largely in response to the kidnapping of an Israeli soldier.

In 2007, U.S. President George W. Bush commuted the 30-month prison sentence of Lewis "Scooter" Libby, former chief of staff for Vice President Dick Cheney. Libby was convicted of obstructing a federal investigation into who leaked the identity of an undercover CIA agent.

Also in 2007, Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., claimed the fundraising lead in the Democratic presidential primary battle with $32.5 million. His top opponent, Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., reported $27 million. In the GOP race, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., had to cut back his campaign because of a shortage of funds.

In 2008, economists said the decline in U.S. automobile sales was a cause for alarm in the American economic picture and not expected to improve in the short term.

In 2009, Amnesty International accused Israel of war crimes in its recent assault on Gaza Palestinians, alleging the deaths of hundreds of unarmed civilians, including 300 children. Israel rejected the report as biased and unacceptable.

Also in 2009, India's ban on homosexuality, in effect since 1861, was overturned by New Delhi's highest court.

In 2010, the U.S. economy lost 125,000 jobs in June, due mainly to the end of temporary Census hires, a government report said. However. the unemployment rate fell from 9.7 percent in May to 9.5 in June.

Also in 2010, three suicide bombers struck a sacred, packed Sufi shrine in Lahore, Pakistan, killing more than 30 people and injuring 175 others.

In 2011, an Exxon Mobil pipeline beneath Montana's Yellowstone River ruptured near Billings, sending a reported 42,000 gallons of crude oil 150 miles downstream, fouling the water and forcing temporary evacuations.

Also in 2011, the largest wildfire in New Mexico history continued to burn virtually unchecked in the Jemez mountains, spreading rapidly over parched land fanned by surging summer winds, already having scorched thousands of acres. Officials said, however, the nearby U.S. nuclear facility at Los Alamos, known as one of the birthplaces of the atomic bomb, escaped damage.

And, the Minnesota state government shut down for almost three weeks while legislators sought to solve staggering budget problems.

A thought for the day: the adage "Appearances are often deceiving" comes from Aesop's "Fables," and something similar appears in the New Testament.

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