And law enforcement couldn't raid these pre-Thunderdome gambling dens, because the rich hired private armies to protect them. When cops stormed the room of Dr. James Graham (a quack who once claimed to be able to cure infertility with an "electric bed"), they found themselves vastly outnumbered by hired goons, and had to leave hundreds of gamblers free. When they came back better prepared, the Magistrate was beaten unconscious with a club -- or perhaps, knowing Graham, a crank-operated electric dildo.
Early Motorists Could -- And Did -- Run Over Pedestrians With Impunity
via Wiki Commons
Before World War II, only the social elite could afford cars, and one of their favorite pastimes -- as it remains today -- was to harass the holy shit out of the poor. The modern methods of class warfare -- mostly gerrymandering and NASCAR jokes -- pale in comparison to the old-times, when the rich just directly ran over the less fortunate with their horseless motohicular autocars.
Library of Congress
It took until 1938 for cars to switch from the blood of the poor to gasoline.
Since there weren't any speed cameras, and police weren't fast enough to catch them, the effective speed limit for most motorists was "whatever they could do." While some authorities frowned on the practice, others just shrugged it off. One British minister, worryingly in charge of transport, essentially condoned vehicular homicide, figuring that if the victims weren't fast enough to get out of the way, they deserved it. Hell, even dogs knew to dodge cars:
St. Martin's Press
Peasants were generously labeled "higher animals."
In 1926, Autocar magazine outright stated that motorists should flee the scene of "accidents," because if they didn't, then there might be prejudice against them. Why, they might even be found guilty of the crime they were guilty of!
St. Martin's Press
"By fleeing, we were basically Batman."
In 1935 England, cars killed or injured two thirds as many people as all the air raids of World War II. Of course, the actual owner of the car wasn't always responsible for said murder, since cars in 1930s Britain had to be left unlocked by law. The predictable result was youths "borrowing" vehicles for a practice they called "monkey parades," which is tragically not what it sounds like. They just drove around harassing and running over people. Not a single actual monkey was involved, because life is bullshit and nothing is okay.
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