December-January Current Events

Image+courtesy+of+google.com

Image courtesy of google.com

     This January, we are in month 11 of quarantine. Since quarantine started, people from all around the world have stated their opinion on both COVID-19 and any political issues. In 2020, we had a presidential election where Donald J. Trump and Joe R. Biden Jr. competed for the biggest seat in the White House. The 46th presidential election was held on November 3rd, 2020, and it was announced that Biden had won the election on November 7th of 2020, 4 days after election day. Trump did not agree with the election results and tried many tactics to get back in “the big chair”, hoping to keep his position as president for the next four years. His actions have resulted in a great deal of controversy between the government parties, some of which still remain to be sorted out.

     More on the subject of politics, Kamala Harris won Vice President of the U.S.A. Harris will be the first-ever black woman to be VP to the president of our country. Both Biden and Harris have plans in the making, with and without each other. The politicians were inaugurated to office on January 20, 2021.

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     Congress was to verify the election results on January 6th. However, they were halted by a peaceful protest turned riot, which fought past police officers and stormed the Capitol Building. Following Trump’s lead, thousands of President Trump supporters gathered in Washington D.C. to protest the results of the 2020 Presidential election claiming fraud on the part of Joe Biden. There are pictures of rioters storming the Senate Chamber and waving Trump flags in the building. The protesters broke in and vandalized various offices including that of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Also, protestors removed the American flag and replaced it with a Trump flag. During the riot, one woman was shot by capitol police. They shot her while a mob tried to reach the House Chamber. There were four other fatalities, one of which was a Capitol Police officer who died from injuries sustained while physically engaging the rioters. Metropolitan Police made 80 arrests related to the unrest in DC.

     According to the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), Covid-related deaths in the US have reached approximately 398,052 and a recorded 69 cases are documented daily per 1000 people. According to the CDPH (California Department of Public Health), vaccinations should be available to all California citizens who want them by the summer of 2021. COVID-19 vaccines are meant to prevent you from getting COVID-19 and from spreading it to others. Vaccinations will be distributed in phases… 

  • Phase 1A includes healthcare workers and long-term care residents. 
  • Phase 1B has two tiers. Tier One includes individuals who are 65 years or older, and those at risk of exposure at work in the following sectors: Education and Childcare, Food and Agriculture, and Emergency Services. Tier Two includes those at risk of exposure at work in the following sectors: Transportation and Logistics, Industrial, Commercial, Residential, and Sheltering Facilities and Services, and Critical Manufacturing. Congregate settings with outbreak risk such as those who are incarcerated or homeless are included in this sector as well.
  • Phase 1C includes individuals who are between 50-64 and people who are between 16-49 with underlying health conditions/risks. It also includes those at risk of exposure at work in the following sectors: Water and Wastewater, Defense, Energy, Chemical and Hazardous Materials, Communications and IT, Financial Services, and Government Operations/Community-Based Essential Functions. 

     Health departments/providers will offer doses to people in lower priority groups when demand subsides or doses may go to waste. The estimate for when the general public can expect to get vaccinations is the Spring of 2021. To get vaccinated, go to community vaccination sites, doctor’s offices, clinics, or pharmacies. 

     After getting vaccinated, you should still wear a mask because the COVID-19 vaccine’s effects under real-life conditions are still unknown. It is important for everyone to continue using all the tools available to us to help stop this pandemic. You may still be able to spread COVID-19 after vaccination, so you should stay home as much as possible.

     From national news to something on a more local level, some new laws were enacted at the beginning of the year, one of which was changes in minimum wages in California.  The laws increased wages to $14 per hour for employers with 26 or more employees and $13 per hour for employers with 25 or fewer employees.

     For the athletes in our community, the month of December introduced some new information regarding sports regulations for schools. Guidelines were released by CIF (California Interscholastic Federation) as to which sports can play at different levels of California Covid tiers. They are as follows:

 

*All information was collected from sources including CNN, USA Today, New York Times, Fox News, and CDPH.