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What Happened on October 26?

  • US President George W. Bush signed the USA PATRIOT Act. (2001) The act — signed into law in response to the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks — increased the power of law enforcement agencies, enabling them to better prevent additional terrorist attacks in America. The law eased restrictions on eavesdropping; detaining and searching suspects; seizing property; and looking through private information such as e-mail, medical records, and telephone records.

  • Israel and Jordan signed a peace treaty. (1994) The Israel–Jordan Treaty of Peace brought an end to a war between the countries that had lasted 46 years.

  • The O.K. Corral gunfight took place. (1881) The infamous gun battle occurred in Tombstone, Arizona, and actually happened six doors away from the O.K. Corral. The battle pitted law enforcement representatives Wyatt Earp, "Doc" Holiday and Earp's two brothers against a bandit gang led by Ike Clanton. Three members of the Clanton group were killed, and Earp's two brothers were injured.

  • British King George III told his Parliament that the American colonies were rebelling. (1775) The King then authorized the use of military force to put a stop to the American Revolution, effectively beginning the American Revolutionary War.

  • An experimental treatment transplanted a baboon's heart into an infant for the first time. (1984) The baby, later identified at Stephanie Fae Beauclair, or "Baby Fae," had hypoplastic left heart syndrome. The transplant was performed at Loma Linda University Medical Center in California. She lived for 21 days after the transplant and died from a kidney infection.

  • Benjamin Franklin set sail for France to gain French military support during the American Revolutionary War. (1776) France had been helping in the American cause "under the table," but didn't want to publicly ally themselves with the US until they were sure the US would win the war. Alliance treaties were signed a year later after American forces won the "Battle of Saratoga."

  • The Erie Canal opened. (1825) The canal established a 363-mile (about 584-kilometer) waterway between the Hudson River in New York and Lake Erie.

  • Austrian military General Enea Piccolomini burned down the city of Skopje, Macedonia, to prevent a cholera outbreak. (1689) While waging battle to claim power over several regions of the Ottoman Empire, General Piccolomini came across Skopje, which was plagued with cholera. The fire burned for two days, destroyed most of the city and brought the city's population down to about 10,000 from 60,000. General Picolomini died from cholera not long after burning down the city.

  • Smog settled into Donora, Pennsylvania, killing 20 people and making another 7,000 ill. (1948) The smog, caused by an air inversion that acts as a kind of containment pressure cap, came from the nearby industrial plants. By the time the smog lifted five days later, 50 more people had died, bringing the death toll to 70. Mortality rates continued to be high in the community for more than 10 years. The event was later described as one of the nation's worst pollution disaster in history.

  • Hillary Rodham Clinton was born. (1947) Clinton is an American politician whose roles have included First Lady of the United States, US Senator and US Secretary of State.

Discussion Comments

By anon996921 — On Oct 26, 2016

In reference to the fifth bullet point, Baby Fae was doing well with the baboon heart. Unfortunately the danger in any organ transplantion is that the immune system has to be so depressed to not cause organ rejection and this results in the slightest infection being potentially deadly. As noted, she died from a kidney infection.

By Krunchyman — On Oct 28, 2014

The second to last bullet point is both shocking and revealing. However, it really makes you wonder why stuff like this isn't heard about as often. After all, whether we realize it or not, pollution has been affecting out world for years, and unless we do something about it, it's only going to get worse. However, in my opinion, it seems like pollution is much more of a factor that needs to be taken care of in areas with factories and smokestacks.

For example, if you live in a quiet or peaceful area such as Bolingbrook or Aurora IL, then the pollution won't be too much of a problem, since there aren't that many factories around. However, if you were to live in an area such as China (which has one of the highest pollution rates), then all of this can definitely pose a problem. Regardless of where we live, whether it's urban or rural, it's always best to make sure that the environment is kept clean.

By RoyalSpyder — On Oct 27, 2014

In relation to the first bullet point, the USA PATRIOT Act really did (and still does) a good job at showing how much times had changed. In some ways, for the better, and some ways, for the worse. This is probably something that most of us can agree on, even myself.

First of all, people now take threats a lot more seriously than they did before, especially if one is at an airport. This allows people to be much more efficient and timely when responding to threats and emergencies.

However, does anyone else feel that in some ways, the PATRIOT Act changed things for the worse? I'm not Muslim, but based on my experience, I have seen and heard some stories about post 9/11 racism against Muslims, and I found it to be very disturbing.

For example, one time when I was talking to a Muslim friend of mine, she said that for the first year after 9/11, people would also look at her suspicious, and question her about several things regarding her faith and religion.

While it's understandable that people are afraid, it's kind of unfair that they would choose to single out an entire group of people based on the actions of other people. This can and has led to conflict and racism.

By Chmander — On Oct 27, 2014

Even though I do find the fifth bullet point to be rather fascinating, it's also a bit disturbing when you really think about it. Would someone really be that desperate that they're actually willing to transplant a baboon's heart into an infant? First of all, I find this fascinating, because it really shows how much technology was advancing, and how more than often, people were willing to take risks. Sometimes, even the most risky of experiments can be successful. However, let's not forget that animal organs aren't exactly the same as ours.

Their systems are structured in ways that ours aren't. Just using an example, is how we only have one stomach, but a cow has four. For the most part, I guess this can explain why the infant died only three weeks later. Despite the transplant being successful, more than likely, the animal heart just couldn't support the human heart, which then led to a failed experiment. On a final note, does anyone else wonder if there have been any other experimental transplants like this? I hope that there were better results.

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