Well, it’s that time of year again. Timefor all of us to stop and take a look back at some of the major events of 2011. Some were frightening, some may have significant consequences in the world in 2012 and beyond, and some…just got a little silly at the end.
It began on a truly scary note. U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-AZ) was getting ready to make an appearance at a local shopping center in Tucson. As she began to greet her constituents, shots rang out. When it was over, Giffords and 18 other people had been shot. Six were killed including one of Giffords staff members, a judge, and a nine year old girl. Jared Lee Loughner was arrested for the shooting.
On a quiet Sunday evening in May, network news interrupted our TV watching to tell us that the most hated man in America, Osama Bin Laden had, at long last, been killed by an elite team of Navy SEALS. The operation had taken place in a compound in Pakistan where Bin Laden had been hiding. In typical terrorist fashion, as the SEALS aimed, Bin Laden pulled one of his wives in front of him as a shield.
In September, what started out as a small group of Canadian activists in New York City’s Zucotti Park, quickly grew into the “Occupy Wall Street” movement. The group began as a protest of what they perceived to be social and economic inequality, arguing that the nation’s wealthiest 1% of wage earners were getting richer due to the recession that began in 2008, while the other 99% were getting poorer. As the movement grew to other cities however, the crowd became more unruly and more unwashed. Finally, law enforcement began evicting the large groups from city parks as violence and sexual assaults became all too common.
As 2011 slips into 2012, we will be focused on the upcoming Presidential election, the recent death of North Korean Dictator Kim Jong-Il, and what that could mean for stability in that region of the world. The struggling U.S. economy and how to finally get it moving again will also be a major topic in the year to come. Americans will no doubt be ready for whatever 2012 has in store for them.