Today is April 20, otherwise known as 4/20. This day is particularly notorious for being a Rastafarian holiday that has also been co-opted by the larger pot smoking community. However, it is also infamous for being Hitler’s birthday, mostly because the two things coinciding is kind of bizarre. Sadly, because of the latter, it’s also a popular date for violent rampages, including Columbine.
So, all around, pretty crummy day. But, a little bit of research will show you that a bunch of awesome things have happened on this day as well. Here are 11 things you can celebrate today other than all that nasty / illegal stuff:
1. On this day in 1836, Eli Whitney–inventor of the cotton gin–was born. Sadly not alcohol related.
2. On this day in 1871, the Civil Rights Act (of 1871) was passed. This enabled the president to override habeas corpus in order to prosecute the KKK and other white supremacist organizations. Serves them right.
3. On this day in 1932, Western Electric and Warner Bros. announced their new method of adding sound to film. Many years later, “Frozen” haters wished this had never happened.
4. On this day in 1937, actor George Takei (Sulu from “Star Trek”!) was born.
5. On this day in 1949, actress Jessica Lange of “American Horror Story” fame was born.
6. On this day in 1951, singer Luther Vandross was born, and then proceeded to aid in the creation of many, many, many other babies with his music.
7. On this day in 1970, Avishai Cohen, Israeli singer, songwriter, and bassist was born.
8. On this day in 1972, Apollo 16 landed on the moon. Score!
9. Also, model and actress Carmen Electra was born, and the world became just a bit more beautiful.
10. On this day in 2008, Danica Patrick won the Indy Japan 300 and became the first female driver to win an Indy car race. Vroom vroom, bitches.
11. April 20 is also World Chinese Language Day. Hen hao (really good)!