2020: Off to a Rough Start But it’s Not Too Late

Jargbah Kalay, Staff Writer

The day before 2020 hit we all wondered what kind of year it was going to be. We wondered whether it was going to be the year of change, a year of positivity after a tough 2019. Little did we know that the first month of this new year was going to get off to a rough start. Multiple problems and even an international conflict took hold at the very start of 2020.
From climate-based disaster in Australia to serious political and military issues with Iran that had many fearing a possible start to World War III, 2020 has been interesting to say the least. Of course, added to that was the impeachment trial of President Trump casting a long shadow over everything. These events haven’t been good and it is time to address these problems and move on to better times.
The fear of a third World War is really concerning but you have to consider that this war, and any future conflict with Iran, can be avoided with more thinking and less action. One important aspect to note on the Iran situation is their take on it. According to BET writer Zayda Rivera, rapper Cardi B is concerned enough about the topic to post a clip from ABC News Martha Raddatz’ coverage of Qassem Soleimani’s memorial for Nightline. More than a million people gathered in Tehran to mourn the death of the beloved Iranian general.” Rivera goes on to report that the video features a 24-year-old college student named Hussein who stated, “‘I’m saying, we love Americans, but we hate your president.”
This kind of viewpoint is important to understand. I’m not saying that we should remove Trump from office because of this, but we have to be aware of how he is abusing power and how other people see him. It is important to limit his power in office because it just feels like he does what he wants with no consequence. While Trump was acquitted by the Senate, his actions teach us that applying stricter laws or rules for the president and presidential power would allow us to avoid this situation from happening again.
Australia’s fires are now under control, but while they raged millions of acres of land burned, homes were destroyed, and both humans and animals killed. According to CNN’s Jesse Yeung, “In total, more than 7.3 million hectares (17.9 million acres) have been burned across Australia’s six states — an area larger than the countries of Belgium and Denmark combined. The worst-affected state is New South Wales, with more than 4.9 million hectares (12.1 million acres) burned.”
Yeung also reported that while the fires destroyed a remarkable amount of the landscape, they also killed 28 people, 1,000 koalas, and destroyed 3,000 homes. While Australia is half a world away, it doesn’t mean that it doesn’t matter or that we as a community should not support it. We need to spread awareness and an easy way of doing this is by talking about it and reaching out to the various groups that are raising money to support the nation’s recovery. Everything counts; it doesn’t matter how little you give to support them. Some ways of doing so include donating straight to the Victoria and New South Wales fire departments, donating to the Victorian government, or donating to the Australian Red Cross.
While 2020 has gotten off to a rocky start, it doesn’t mean that it has to continue that way. People are still changing and growing, the world doesn’t have to be bad. As long as we protect it and do the right things to make sure we are safe and our planet is safe, we can see many years after this one.