2016: Year in Review

As 2016 draws to an imminent close, it is time to reflect on the events that occurred this year. In the style of other news sources, including “The New York Times” and “The Huffington Post,” The Phillipian has compiled a list of ten positive events from 2016, in no particular order.

The wild tiger population increased for the first time in a century, according to the World Wildlife Fund.

The Chicago Cubs won the World Series, ending a 108-year championship drought.

The World Health Organization declared that the Zika virus is no longer a global health emergency.

Money raised from the A.L.S. Ice Bucket Challenges helped fund  research on the gene responsible for A.L.S., and scientists are closer to finding an effective treatment, according to “The Washington Post.”

Fifty million trees were planted in a single day in India, breaking the world record as part of the deal Indian made at the Paris Climate Conference, according to “National Geographic.”

NASA’s Juno spacecraft reached Jupiter on July 4, after a five-year journey.

California passed a law forbidding retailers from handing out single-use plastic bags.

U.S. Army started offering twelve weeks paid maternity leave, according to the U.S. Department of Defense.

Over 800 hostages of Boko Haram were rescued by the Nigerian army, according to “The Guardian.”

British Columbia, Canada, committed to preserving 85 percent of one of the largest temperate rainforests in the world, according to “The Guardian.”

This list captures only a fraction of the groundbreaking discoveries, acts of heroism, and advances in humankind that happened throughout the world this year.

Given the time or the ink, this list could span pages. Yet, while this year has had many moments of goodness, it has also revealed incredible divisiveness and violence in the United States and around the world. As you read this, the people of Aleppo share utterly horrifying videos of unknowable tragedy. Shootings and acts of terrorism and hatred have flooded the daily news cycle at seemingly unprecedented rates. Misuse of natural resources continues to destroy our planet and its future.

We cannot allow ourselves to be placated by lists of things that are good. We must, instead, take that which is inspiring and positive as motivation to create a more hopeful, peaceful world. As we leave campus this holiday season, many of us plan to spend time with those we love, with family, with friends, with mentors, educators, and community members. We wish everyone safe travels in whichever directions they go.

This editorial represents the views of The Phillipian, vol. CXXXIX.