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Good riddance 2020, welcome 2021
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By Joseph Rios
While 2020 was a truly challenging time for the world, it was a year that will undoubtedly go down in the history books.

The Coronavirus pandemic, protests against social injustice, a presidential election and more dominated headlines in 2020. The year changed life as we know it, for now, but brighter days seem to be on the horizon thanks to new vaccines that have recently rolled out that fight against the virus. Here is a look back at the year.

COVID-19 made its first appearance in January in the United States when a man in Washington who had traveled to Wuhan, China tested positive for the virus sending the world into a health frenzy. January also marked the death of NBA great Kobe Bryant who died in a helicopter crash along with his daughter Gianna Bryant, six other passengers and the pilot of the helicopter. As the month wrapped up, the World Health Organization announced a global health emergency due to the virus.

Shortly after the Super Bowl in February, the Senate acquitted President Donald Trump of two articles of impeachment.

As March came around, Super Tuesday presidential primaries strengthened Joe Biden’s lead to represent the Democratic Party in the 2020 presidential election. On March 11, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared COVID-19 a pandemic, causing sports leagues to lockdown, the Dow to drop and Americans to panic shop — leading to empty grocery store shelves lacking basic items like toilet paper and cleaning supplies. On March 26, Colorado went into a statewide stay-at-home order, requiring residents by law to only leave their homes for critical needs. Trump signed a $2 trillion stimulus package on March 27, the largest in United States history that included the Payroll Protection Program (PPP) loans to small businesses.

April marked a month in which the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended that all Americans consider wearing face masks to slow the spread of the virus. It was also the month in which Biden became presumptive Democratic presidential nominee after U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders suspended his campaign.

May recorded a change in focus from the pandemic to social injustice issues as the United States passed 100,000 COVID-19 related deaths. On May 25, George Floyd, a Black man, died when a police officer knelt on his neck (recorded live) as he pled for his life and said that he couldn’t breathe. Floyd’s death inspired protests nationwide for months, including in downtown Denver.

The summer brought the death of Georgia Rep. John Lewis, a civil rights icon who died of pancreatic cancer on July 17. Wildfires burned throughout different parts of the country including California and Colorado. On Sept. 18, Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg passed away, and shortly after, Trump nominated Amy Coney Barrett for the Supreme Court.

In early October, Trump was admitted to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center after testing positive for Coronavirus. Meanwhile, the presidential election began to heat up as the month as Trump and Biden sparred in two debates in October.

Nov. 7 marked a day for change in the White House when Biden and Vice President-Elect Kamala Harris made history by clinching the 2020 presidential Election/Electoral College victory after winning Pennsylvania. Trump filed numerous lawsuits aimed at challenging vote counts in key battleground states, none of which were successful.

Earlier this month, the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines for COVID-19 received a greenlight from the FDA to be administered to Americans. The first shots in the United States were given on Dec. 14.

The year was eventful, challenging, and oftentimes seen as something out of the Twlight Zone, but it showed how strong Americans can be when they come together. 2020 you will never be forgotten, but you did not define us! Cheers to 2021!

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