SHEPHERDSTOWN, W.Va., – 2020 was nobody’s year, but we are in the home stretch now. What better time is there to look back upon the year our grandchildren will be asking us questions about for their history projects 30 years from now than the first half of December.
2020 opened as any great Dystopian story would – with political unrest.
On Jan. 1, the dawn of the first day, the U.S. military fired tear gas and rubber bullets into a crowd of at the United States Embassy in Baghdad, Iraq.
Covid was already being reported at this time as an ”outbreak of a respiratory illness” in Wuhan, China on December 31, 2019.
Then, two days later on January 3 Iranian General Qasem Soleimani is killed by a U.S. air strike at Baghdad International Airport, sparking tensions between the States and Iran. At Soleimani’s funeral, 56 people are killed in a stampede.
By the 6, America is releasing their first warnings of international travel due to the growing epidemic.
Jan. 8, Iran fires upon two American-controlled Iraqi bases and shoots down Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752.
Weeks of further political unrest go by, including threats of impeachment on President Trump. On January 20th, the first case of Covid-19 is reported on U.S. soil.
Then, on January 26, Kobe Bryant, his 13-year-old daughter Gianna, and seven others are killed in a helicopter crash.
By the 31, the World Health Organization (WHO) has developed a Covid task force and declares Covid an outbreak of international concern. Flights to China are put on pause as per a temporary travel ban by President Trump, and the UK begins its withdrawal from the European Union.
February opened on a better note than January did, but that did not last long.
On Feb. 2, the San Francisco 49ers are defeated by the Kansas City Chiefs at the Super Bowl LIV in Miami, Florida.
Bernie Sanders loses Iowa’s state Caucus to Pete Buttigieg by a single electoral vote.
Feb. 4, Trump delivers the State of the Union Address. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi tears up a copy of this speech on national television.
On that same day, the Diamond Princess cruise ship is quarantined at Yokohama, Japan.
On Feb. 6, NASA astronaut Christina Koch returns from her record-setting 328-day long trip to space.
Then, on Feb. 9, South Korean film Parasite makes film history as the first movie awarded the Academy Award for Best Picture that plays in a language other than English.
By Feb. 11, Covid-19 has officially been granted its official name by WHO.
February was not without its own contributions to the political unrest, as on Feb. 23, Ahmaud Arbery is shot and killed while on a jog in Georgia. On the 26, a shooting at Molson Coors Beverage Company in Milwaukee claims the lives of five people. Lynching is established as a Federal Hate crime. On the 29, the first Covid-related death is reported in the States.
Wrapping up Feb. on the 29, the U.S. and the Taliban come to a conditional peace agreement.
In the opening week of March, Pete Buttigieg, Amy Klobuchar, Michael Bloomberg, and Elizabeth Warren all drop out of the presidential race, with all but Warren endorsing Biden as president.
On March 3, a series of 13 Nashville tornadoes kill 25 people.
March 11, WHO declares Covid-19 a national pandemic. The NBA suspends this year’s season and E3 suspends their annual video game conference. Utah Jazz Center Rudy Gobert, as well as Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson all test positive for Covid-19. That same day Harvey Weinstein is sentenced to 25 years in prison.
By March 12 , Major League Baseball, National Hockey League, and Major League Soccer suspend the upcoming season due to the pandemic.
On March 13th, Corona Virus is announced as a national emergency by President Trump.
Breonna Taylor is shot by police in Louisville, Kentucky.
On the 14 Spain goes into full lockdown, and on the 15 public schools are ordered to close in New York.
Kevin Durant and Idris Elba test positive for Covid-19 as the global death toll of the pandemic rises to ten thousand, followed by Senator Rand Paul and Harvey Weinstein on the 22.
And on the 24, Trump calls to reopen the country by Easter Sunday. On that same day, a man is shot dead by the FBI who was suspected of plotting to attack a Missouri hospital that was providing Covid treatment.
Despite the lockdown and calls to reopen, New York surpasses 20,000 cases of the pandemic.
The stimulus bill is passed by congress on March 27, bringing with it the extended unemployment benefits. By the end of March, New York has passed 75 thousand cases of Covid-19 and has surpassed China in Covid-related deaths.
Over 6.6 million people file for unemployment at the start of April after businesses close to reduce the spread of the virus.
Trump suggests using hydroxychloroquine to treat the virus, and by April 5, the White House begins to suggest that people wear face masks in public.
April 8, Bernie Sanders drops from the presidential race, opening the election up for Joe Biden.
April 10, the U.S. becomes the first nation to surpass 2,000 corona virus related deaths from a single day. U.S. Covid deaths continue to climb past 50,000 by mid-April.
Stimulus checks begin to roll out on the 13 and by the 14, Trump announces that the government will not be funding WHO.
Armed protests start on the 15, with demonstrators protesting lockdown measures.
By the end of April, the U.S, makes up one third of the three million worldwide Covid cases.
On May 5, video footage of Ahmaud Arbery’s murder is leaked onto the internet. Gregory and Travis McMichael are charged with Arbery’s murder. William Bryan, who filmed Arbery’s murder, is also charged with murder.
As the states passes 80,000 Corona-related deaths and national unemployment barely scratches 15 percent, Elon musk announces that he plans to reopen a Tesla factory in California, defying local lockdown orders.
On May 25, George Floyd is killed by police officers in Minneapolis after kneeling on his neck for eight minutes and 46 seconds. This sparks anti-police protests, police brutality rallies, and further ignites public outrage on racial injustice. Protests and riots fill the streets of America shortly after.
On May 28, U.S. cases pass 100,000. Minneapolis Police Department abandons Third Precinct, which is then burned down by protestors. CNN Center in Atlanta is also damaged by protests. Former police officer Derek Chauvin faces trial and is charged with the murder of George Floyd.
May 30, SpaceX sends two U.S. astronauts to the International Space Station.
President Trump ends the month of May by labeling Antifa as a terrorist organization on the 31.
On the first of June, police clear protestors from the streets of Washington D.C. with pepper spray and rubber bullets prior to Trump leaving the White House for a Photo Op.
Three Minneapolis officers are charged for their role in the murder of George Floyd.
Two Buffalo officers are suspended and charged with assault after video is released of them pushing a 75-year-old man to the ground, leaving him with a head injury.
On June 5, Joe Biden achieves the minimum delegates required to secure the Democratic nomination for the Presidential race.
June 7, demonstrators in England pull down a statue of Edward Colston. The protestors then threw the statue into the harbor.
By June 9, television show Cops is taken off the air after 31 years of run time.
The U.S. reaches a new high, making it the first nation to reach 2 million Covid cases.
On June 12, Rayshard Brooks is shot dead at a Georgia Wendy’s. The store is burned down by protestors soon after. Brook’s killer is charged with murder and his partner with assault.
June 15, the Supreme Court rules that employers may not discriminate on a basis of sexual identity.
June 16, North Korea cuts off communications with South Korea after the Inter-Korean Liaison Office is destroyed. Ron Jeremy is charged with the rape of three women and the sexual assault of another.
As June comes to a close, the worldwide number of Covid cases passes 10 million.
On July 2, Ghislaine Maxwell is arrested in New Hampshire.
July 3, Texas urges citizens to shelter in place as hospitals reach max capacity. California permits places of worship to continue to gather with restrictions. Despite national concerns, Trump holds his rally at Mount Rushmore, where social distancing guidelines were not put in place. Georgia healthcare workers begin petitions for the State Government to take pandemic concerns more seriously and to close bars and nightclubs.
By July 4, 21 states have instated a mask-mandate. Additionally, on this same day a car drives through a crowd of protestors in Seattle. Multiple shootings occurred over Independence Day Weekend. Multiple shootings across Atlanta, Chicago, and Washington D.C. left five children and two adults dead and eight injured.
An additional four people were injured at a New York shooting on July 11. On the 11, despite rising Florida cases, Disney World reopened its doors to visitors.
During mid-July, 27 states began to close back down, and hybrid-based classes are suggested.
Protests turn violent on July 17 in Chicago as protestors attack police. On the 19, 25 people were shot in Chicago, resulting in four deaths. That weekend, 63 people were shot, resulting in twelve deaths.
July 27th marks the beginning of a National coin shortage.
On August 1, seven St. Louis Cardinals players, as well as six staff members, tested positive for Covid-19.
August 3, the death of two teenagers bring the U.S. minor Covid-related death toll to nine. Across the states, as students returned to schools, there was a sharp rise in Corona cases among children and school staff.
Two shootings occurred on August 9, leaving a collective 27 people injured and one dead in Washington D.C.
August 12, Joe Biden announced his running mate to be Kamala Harris.
The FDA gave permission to use the plasma from people who are found to have antibodies to the virus in treatment to those with the virus. This method has been used to treat over 70 thousand patients and is presumed a safe treatment that still needs further testing.
August 24 protestors took to the streets of Louisiana to once again protest police brutality. The protest quickly turned into a riot across the nation, resulting in dozens of injuries and arrests.
Sept. 1 a black man was shot dead by police after fleeing from an arrest. Protests sparked and quickly turned violent. On the fourth, police clashed violently with protestors, resulting in 11 arrests, despite statistics showing that 93 percent of protestors were peaceful. 50 protestors were arrested on the sixth after Portland’s 100th consecutive night of protests.
Sept. 7, five boats sank during a Trump parade. No injuries or fatalities were reported from this event.
On September 18, Ruth Bader Ginsburg passed away from complications with cancer.
On the 23, a court decision was made that abdicated all officers involved in the shooting except one, sparking further protests as people claimed that the officers were not being held accountable.
During a Brianna Taylor protest on the 26, a man shot and critically wounded two officers.
On September 25, President Trump announced that he planned to nominate Judge Coney Barrett to take the seat left vacant by Ginsburg’s passing, creating tensions over who would nominate Ginsburg’s successor.
The 29 saw a shooting at the Jacksonville, Florida Amazon facility. The shooting left one dead and one injured.
October saw an increase in Covid cases in France, with France under threat of lockdown by Oct. 2.
Kuwait monarch Sheikh Sabah Al-Sabah was reported dead at the age of 91 on Oct. 3 after 14 years of power.
Kyrgyzstan saw clashes between protestors and vigilante groups on the seventh after outrage ensued over parliamentary election results were released in which Sadyr Zhaparov was elected.
Mass anti-police protests began on the eighth in Nigeria, and from then until the tenth, 10 people were reported dead from the protests and rises to 56 by Oct. 22.
Oct. 10, Azerbaijan and Armenia both accuse each other of breaking a temporary cease fire.
Thailand entered pro-democracy protests.
It is announced on Oct. 23 by Trump that Sudan and Israel have agreed to restore relations.
Australia announced they would be coming out of lockdown in Melbourne after four months without any new Corona cases reported.
On Oct. 26 a missile struck Azeri, killing 21 civilians. Armenia denies their involvement in the missile.
On Nov. 1, Portland declared a riot after several businesses were broken into during protests.
By the 11, Texas holds one tenth of the nation’s Covid Cases as it surpasses one million cases.
On the 20, these numbers rose further with nearly 12 million cases. It was also on this same day that Donald Trump Jr. tested positive for Covid-19.
CNN reported on November 16 that there were nearly 92,700 cases of abuse from within the Boy Scouts.
Additionally, it was on the 20 that Georgia announced Biden as the state’s winner, putting him at the 270 electoral votes needed to defeat Trump for presidency. Trump issued a recount for the election, claiming fraudulent votes.
With 2020 wrapping up, it is likely we will see more breaking news as the holidays draw nearer. Covid-19 cases in the States are on a continuous rise, and the holidays will likely bring the numbers higher.