Good News in History, January 21

Good News in History, January 21

Carter Center photoOn this day 40 years ago, U.S. President Jimmy Carter pardoned nearly all American Vietnam War draft evaders, some of whom had emigrated to Canada. (1977)

MORE Good News on this Date:

  • The Kiwanis club was formed in Detroit as a networking group for young professional businessmen; today, the group has 606,000 members in 96 nations who also dedicate themselves to serving children and improving the world (1915)
  • Albania declared itself a republic (1925)
  • Operatic tenor Placido Domingo, one of the famous trio known as “The Three Tenors,” turns 75 today (1941)
  • Pope John Paul II began his first visit to Cuba (1998)
  • A 72-year-old hardware store was inundated with customers when a grassroots “cash mob” delivered a boost to the local family-owned Ohio business (2012)
  • The Women’s March for civil rights drew more than a million marchers in D.C. and around the U.S. (2017)


31 years ago today, the first National Hugging Day was celebrated, founded by a minister and social services worker in Michigan. The Hugging Day website name “Most Huggable in 2006” Jana Doolittle of Clio, Michigan, a third grade teacher at Carter Elementary who asks her class daily “Does anyone need a hug today?” (Watch the Free Hugs video, one of the most popular videos ever presented on the Good News Network.)


Happy Birthday to sexy, smart and sporty Geena Davis, who turns 61 today. The actress, most known for her role in Thelma and Louise and A League of Their Own, won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for The Accidental Tourist in 1988. The Mensa member who has campaigned for more and better women’s roles in children’s programming also fronts the Women’s Sports Foundation. Davis was one of 300 women who vied for a semifinals berth in the US Olympic archery team and placed 24th just two years after being introduced to the sport. In 2007 she was honored for her work on gender in the media, receiving the Hollywood Hero award – WATCH that video, here.  (1956)