2016 is almost over and many folks are saying good riddance, what with the crazy election cycle and negative news stories bombarding us daily, plus the loss of many icons and people we hold dear. But I prefer to focus on the positives of 2016, the reasons we should celebrate the year. So here goes, in no particular order:
- The election is over! No more debates, no more annoying political ads and no more odd conversations with people I don’t know, who assumed I was voting for the same candidate they were and chatted away about it.
- Even though we didn’t elect the first woman president, we did elect a number of other firsts – the first black female senator, the first Latina senator, the first openly LBGTQ governor, and the first Indian-American congressional representative.
- Sports provided some relief - Chicago Cubs fans finally got their World Series victory, the first since 1908, and Cleveland fans saw the Cavaliers nab the NBA Championship marking that city’s first pro sports title in 52 years. And despite the 49ers being in the toilet this year, the Raiders are in the playoffs for the first time since 2002.
- Good news among the chatter - The U.S. economy grew and the Dow Jones hit an all-time high
- Progress for earthlings - CO2 emissions in the U.S. dropped to their lowest levels since 1991. That means all those smog controls we’ve been forced to use are actually working.
- Diplomacy wins - President Obama visited Cuba, Hiroshima, Japan, and Vietnam this year, all in an attempt to improve relations with these countries. Peace out!
- Water, water, everywhere – OK, not everywhere, but consistent rain has raised lake and reservoir levels in Northern California easing drought concerns for 2016.
- Education leads the way - California high school graduation rates climbed this year, especially among English Learners and migrant students. (I'm sure it has nothing to do with that testing nonsense.)
- Cuteness thrives – The USGS said the populations of California sea otters have reached the highest level since 1982 and will be removed from the endangered species list.
Did I miss anything? What other good news can we celebrate as the year winds down? Feel free to comment below.
Happy New Year!!