In Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court ruled that abortion fell under the Constitutional right to privacy. The Court mandated federal protection for pregnancy termination during the first trimester and allowed state laws limiting it during the second and third trimesters.
President Jimmy Carter and Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev signed the second Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty, which would have limited the number of strategic nuclear missiles in each country. Congress never approved the treaty.
In a series of events dubbed the “Saturday Night Massacre,” President Nixon ordered the firing of the special prosecutor in the Watergate case, Archibald Cox; both the US attorney general and deputy attorney general refused the order and resigned in protest.
Members of the militant American Indian Movement staged an armed occupation of Wounded Knee, South Dakota, the site of a massacre of Lakota Indians at the hands of the US Army in 1890. The occupiers were led by Russell Means and Dennis Banks. They declared an independent Sioux nation and held the area for seventy-one days, surrendering after an AIM member was shot and killed by federal authorities.