Looking back over the past decade
As we are about to enter into the year 2020, I want to pause and review some of the biggest events of the last decade. Since a lot has happened in these past years I will not be able to summarize everything, but I will mention a few of the biggest events that impacted our country and even the world.
Earthquake in Haiti
On Jan. 10, 2012, a 7.0 magnitude earthquake hit Haiti killing 250,000 people and displacing five million citizens from their homes. According to World Vision, the earthquake occurred at the shallow depth of 6.2 miles below the surface, which caused massive damage on the ground level. Most of the multi-level concrete buildings in Haiti’s capital, Port-au-Prince, collapsed because they were poorly constructed as there were no building codes enforced. This devastation left Haitians without food and water, and neighboring counties offered all the help they could give. The natural disaster even prompted a remake of the 1985 song “We are the World,” sung by many popular artists hoping to help the people of Haiti. Though the earthquake was almost a decade ago, Haiti is still trying to rebuild.
Osama bin Laden’s death and the rise of ISIS
The U.S. Navy Seals took down Osama bin Laden, the founder of the pan-Islamic militant group, al-Qaeda, on May 2, 2011. Former President Barack Obama, former Vice-President Joe Biden and former Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton were among many who watched the mission play out in the Situation Room of the White House. After DNA samples were taken, bin Laden was buried at sea. In 2014, the rise of ISIS, a terrorist militant group, created challenges to American foreign policy as the group started targeting and recruiting the younger generation throughout multiple countries. The terrorist group has been behind various terrorist attacks around the world.
Black Lives Matter Movement
As systematic racism has always been an issue in America, the Black Lives Matter movement started in 2013 and has expanded globally since then. The movement developed after Trayvon Martin, an unarmed teenager, was shot and killed by George Zimmerman, a neighborhood watch volunteer, who was acquitted for the murder. Since then, the movement has gained popularity as the hashtag #BlackLivesMatter has been used for a variety of incidents such as when Michael Brown was shot and killed by police in Ferguson, Missouri. Since its rise, counter-protests of #AllLivesMatter state that everybody deserves equal attention no matter what their race is.
Same-sex marriage is legalized
On June 28, 2015, the Supreme Court legalized gay marriage nationwide. In the 1970s, civil rights campaigning began calling for the right for same-sex couples to be able to marry without distinction between opposite-sex couples. Since 2004, same-sex marriage has made its way throughout many courtrooms in the U.S. as each state has separate marriage laws. Once the Supreme Court ruled in favor of same-sex marriage in 2015, all marriage is seen as equal under the marriage equality law. Among some of the most prominent supporters for same-sex marriages are human rights and civil rights organizations.
A new way to travel
The invention of Uber and Airbnb both changed the way people traveled for better and for worse. Uber, an app that lets you request a ride to and from places all on an app, launched in 2009. Another app closely similar to Uber is Lyft which launched in 2012. Both apps have changed the way people commute, especially in larger cities. However, they have also been under fire as people are questioning how strict their background checks are, as there have been multiple sexual assault cases and even deaths. Along with Uber and Lyft, Airbnb, a service letting people book out their homes for travelers to stay in, have also become popular over the past decade. Though Airbnb was founded in 2008, it has become a popular alternative to staying in a hotel during the time of this decade.