The Student News Site of Oakmont High School

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The Student News Site of Oakmont High School

Norse Notes

The Student News Site of Oakmont High School

Norse Notes

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How did we get here?

The world’s biggest events across our four years at Oakmont.
The biggest events of 2020-2024.

PC: PxHere
The biggest events of 2020-2024. PC: PxHere


Covid-19 Pandemic.

On Jan. 9, the World Health Organization announced that a deadly virus had emerged in Wuhan, China. Months later, the virus reached over 20 million people with under 800,000 deaths. As of Feb. 9, 2024, 702,882,810 people have been infected, with the virus claiming just under 7 million lives.

Kobe Bryant died in a helicopter crash. 

The legendary Los Angeles Lakers player Kobe Bryant was killed along with his daughter, Gianna, and seven others when their helicopter crashed in Calabasas. Bryant’s athletic achievements were only part of the reason roughly 20,000 people gathered for a public memorial service honoring him at Staples Center in downtown Los Angeles.

Black Lives Matter protests. 

The police’s involvement in the killings of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and George Floyd sparked a wave of protests across the United States. Protesters demanded police brutality and racial injustice be brought to an end. This was a particularly big period of unrest in the U.S.


The U.S. Capital insurrection.

On Jan. 6, the United States Capitol Building in Washington, D.C., was attacked by a mob of supporters of then U.S. president Donald Trump, two months after his loss in the 2020 presidential election. Within 36 hours of the event, five people died: one was shot by Capitol Police, another died of a drug overdose, and three died of natural causes (including a police officer). More than 1,200 persons were charged with federal crimes arising from the attack.

U.S. military withdrew all troops from Afghanistan.

The United States Armed Forces completed their withdrawal from Afghanistan on Aug. 30. An initial plan was for reduction of U.S. forces from 13,000 to 8,600 troops by July 2020, followed by a complete withdrawal by May 2021, if the Taliban kept its commitments. The Taliban took back over the country soon after all U.S troops withdrew. This was the longest lasting war in U.S. history, beating out the Vietnam war by only 5 months. We were officially at war in Afghanistan for 19 years and 10 months.

Derek Chauvin found guilty on all counts in the murder of George Floyd.

Derek Chauvin was seen on video pinning George Floyd, a 46-year-old Black man, to the ground with his knee on Memorial Day 2020 for over nine minutes after police responded to a report that Floyd used a counterfeit $20 bill. Chauvin was found guilty of second- and third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter. Chauvin was sentenced to 12.5 years in prison under sentencing guidelines for a first-time offender. 


Russia invaded Ukraine.

On Feb. 24, Russia launched a special military operation to force the demilitarization of Ukraine. To the surprise of the Kremlin and most military experts, Ukraine withstood the initial onslaught and then began to turn back Russian forces. Two years later the war still rages on, with tens of thousands of both Russian and Ukrainian soldiers left dead. 

Mass-shootings rose, new legislation.

2022 was marked by several more high-profile mass shootings including Buffalo, N.Y., Highland Park, Ill., Colorado Springs, Colo., and Chesapeake, Va. The most prominent of these shootings was in Uvalde, Texas, where 19 children and two teachers were killed at Robb Elementary School. On June 24, Congress sent the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act to President Biden’s desk for his signature, marking the first time in nearly 30 years Congress approved major legislation to combat gun violence.

Roe v. Wade overturned. 

On June 24, the Supreme Court overturned the decades-old Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion nationwide, shifting focus to state efforts on abortion. The 6-3 decision in Dobbs v. Jackson allowed enforcement of state laws restricting abortion earlier in pregnancy. California, Michigan and Vermont voters later enshrined abortion rights in their state constitutions via ballot measures.


Israel-Hamas war claimed thousands of lives in Gaza.

In October, a militia who controls Gaza, Hamas, launched a series of rockets over the Israeli border. All rockets were shot down by Israel’s counter missile system. Israel responded with a series of missile attacks that have targeted Gazan refugee camps and hospitals. Thousands of men, women, and children have lost their lives. Gaza is one of the most densely populated places in the world and almost half of the population is children. The Israel-Hamas war is the largest question mark around global tensions and foreign policy going into 2024.

Buffalo Bills player Damar Hamlin collapsed during a game. 

On Jan. 2, Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin collapsed on the field and needed to be resuscitated after what appeared to be a routine tackle during the first quarter of a game at Cincinnati. The sight of an athlete nearly dying on the field shocked the NFL and the world, and Hamlin’s charitable organization raised more than $9 million after an outpouring of donations. Hamlin’s collapse was attributed to commotio cordis, a rare cause of cardiac arrest, and the player made his official return to football in November after a remarkable recovery. 

Donald Trump indicted. 

Former president Donald Trump made history in March by becoming the first former U.S. president to have ever been charged with a crime when he was indicted by a New York grand jury. In June, Trump was to face federal criminal charges when he was indicted for mishandling and hiding classified documents at Mar-a-Lago, his Florida estate. In August, Trump was charged in a third criminal case in Georgia, where he and 18 of his close allies were charged with plans to overturn his 2020 election loss in the state.

2024’s biggest questions:

Will Trump be kept off the ballot over the 14th Amendment? 

How will the Israel-Hamas war unfold, and will tensions in the middle-east see U.S. intervention?

Will any new legislation be passed that greatly affects our generation?

How will AI continue to impact our industries?

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About the Contributor
Cooper Hicks
Cooper Hicks, News Editor
Cooper Hicks is the News Editor for Journalism and has been in the class for three semesters. He has enlisted into the U.S. Army so that is where he is headed after Oakmont. In the Army, he will work as a combat medic.  

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