Not Everything About 2020 Sucked

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by Aiyana Thomas

It’s no secret: 2020 was a horrible year for basically everyone. With the pandemic, everything closing, social distancing, everything being online, etc., our normal day-to-day life was uprooted and shifted so heavily and quickly, there was no time to adjust. 

Thankfully, it is a new year and we can hope for the best. But 2020 wasn’t all horrible. Here are some good things that happened in 2020 that you may have missed because of the overwhelming amount of bad news.

SpaceX

On May 30, 2020 a rocket ship designed and built by Elon Musk’s SpaceX launched two Americans, Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken into orbit from U.S soil — which hasn’t been done in nearly a decade.

Branching Out

Tommy Rhomberg, a 12-year-old boy from Iowa, turned a tragedy into a success. 

After August’s wild wind storm known as derecho, Rhomberg crafted more than 200 baseball bats from fallen branches, which he sold to raise money for victims of the storm.

Each bat was about 30 inches long, made with his grandfather’s whittling tools and sandpaper. Tommy sold each bat for $100 and donated $20 from each profit to the Greater Cedar Rapids Community Foundation Disaster Relief Fund.

Good News for Climate Change

Carbon dioxide emissions have declined — partly due to the recession, but also because the cost of renewable energy sources, such as solar and wind, is declining more quickly than most have predicted. Fewer people were going out, which helped emissions go down in that small period of time. 

In Italy, when everyone was in quarantine, the canals of Venice were filled with fish, marine life, instead of cloudy water. There was less boat traffic in Venice and so the sediments weren’t being churned up. It was clearer than it had been in recent memory.

Drive-Ins Are Back

Due to Covid-19, many movie theaters have had to shut down, which led some of the theaters to close. 

But in mid-July, 160 Walmart parking lots nationwide were turned into temporary drive-in theaters so that we could still enjoy movies while being safe. 

Many drive-in theaters have been enjoying a burst of customers. We can still social distance while enjoying a movie in the comfort of our own space. 

Xiao Qi Ji

The Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute had a baby! The rare birth of a giant panda cub excited onlookers and environmentalists alike. Xiao Qi Ji, which means “little miracle”, was chosen as the name for the panda by a popular vote. 

This panda’s birth was live-streamed on the zoo’s Giant Panda Cam. Since then, more than 1.5 million people have watched him grow via livestreams.  

All in all, 2020 wasn’t that bad. These couple of stories show that even when there is bad and chaos, there’s always a silver lining. We have to remember some happy things can get overlooked with the bombarding bad news.

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