Masses Gather Across World to Protest Gun Violence

March 24, 2018

Hundreds of thousands of people took part in the March for our Lives, a series of events to commemorate the lives lost in school shootings in America. Students from Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., where the latest mass shooting took place a month ago, were in Washington, D.C., along with an estimated 500,000 people. Students and adults also marched in other 37 countries, on every other continent except Antarctica.

Access Prognosis Grim on World Water Day

March 22, 2018

To mark World Water Day, March 22, the United Nations has released a report saying that 2.1 billion people don't have access to safe drinking water. Another high-profile report, from WaterAid, found that in some countries, few people had access to clean water. Only 19 percent of Eritrea residents do; that country was found to have the least number of people who could get clean water. Then there is Cape Town, South Africa, battling a drought that began in 2015. Current estimates are that the large city will run out of water on July 9. The U.N. Environment Programme is focusing on this year's theme<, "Nature for Water," urging people around the world to restore wetlands, plant more trees, and reconnect rivers to floodplains.

Great Pacific Garbage Patch Growing Quickly

March 22, 2018

The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is growing–and moving. The large concentration of largely plastic trash in the Pacific Ocean is now 600,000 square miles in size–twice the size of Texas. Current estimates are that the Patch weighs 88,000 tons. Nearly half of the plastic in the Patch was fishing nets; other commonly found larger items included ropes and packaging straps. Eight percent was microplastics. Scientists also discovered, the Patch is moving, more than they thought it did. It is water-based and so not entirely stationary; but until now, scientists had thought that prevailing winds and ocean currents kept the garbage in a central location.

Underground Railroad 'Conductor' House Named Historic Place

March 22, 2018

Philadelphia has designed as historic a building that once served as a waystation on the Underground Railroad. The "conductors" were William and Letitia Still. He was a son of freed slaves. A prominent member of the Philadelphia Anti-Slavery Society, he was also a known leader in the movement to free other slaves, along the secret route of safe houses and areas known as the Underground Railroad. He is thought be many historians to have coined the term.

Interactive Climate Map Shows Past, Future

March 21, 2018

A geography professor's new project can facilitate current climate comparisons and future climate predictions. Tomasz Stepinski, of the University of Cincinnati, unveiled an interactive map that incorporates 50 years of meteorological data compiled from 50,000 weather stations around the world. Students or other researchers can compare their own area to others in the world having a similar climate. The map also looks to the future, using prediction models to show graphically where in the world will experience higher or lower levels of climate change in the next 50 years.

Wreckage Found of USS Juneau, Ship Carrying 5 Brothers

March 19, 2018 Sullivan brothers

Whereabouts of another sunk American ship are now known, thanks to an ongoing salvage project by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen. This time, it's the USS Juneau, perhaps most well-known for carrying five brothers from the same family. The ship lies on the Pacific seafloor near the Solomon Islands. The Juneau launched in late 1941 and went on patrol a few months later in the Atlantic. In August 1942, the cruiser entered the Pacific and saw action a few times, including in the Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands and in the Naval Battle of Guadalcanal. Among the dead when a Japanese submarine sunk it were the five Sullivan brothers.

High Court Won't Touch New Pennsylvania Congressional Maps

March 19, 2018

The nation's highest court has weighed in on the redesigned Pennsylvania congressional maps, and the result is a clear and concise refusal to take action, meaning that the original decision stands. Earlier this year, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court had struck down the state's existing congressional district boundaries, saying that the maps, as designed by the state legislature, were an unconstitutional instance of gerrymandering, drawing up voter districts for overwhelmingly partisan means. The state high court then set a very short timeline for the legislature to draw up new maps for congressional boundaries and for the state's governor to sign the bill into law. That didn't happen, and the court itself drew up new maps, after consulting with both Democrats and Republicans. The new maps show a more even spread in political preference as identified by voters. Republican lawmakers then asked the U.S. Supreme Court to intervene. The new petition cited the U.S. Constitution in arguing that the Pennsylvania Supreme Court had overstepped its bounds, but the U.S. Supreme Court did not agree. In fact, the high court included no comments in its decision not to review the case; further, no justice dissented.

Thousands in National School Walkout

March 14, 2018

Thousands of students across the country participated in the National School Walkout, an event planned to memorialize those who lost their lives in a Florida school shooting in February.

Washington, D.C. protest

More than 3,100 separate groups of students (and, in many cases, adults), numbering close to 200,000 people in all, marched, chanted, or stood or sat silently at 10 a.m. in their local time zone. The protests were planned to last 17 minutes, one minute for each of the 14 students and three adults who was shot and killed on February 14 at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, in Parkland, Fla. Some students carried signs with messages urging peace and harmony, others carried signs with names and faces of those lost in the attack. Others issued calls for tighter controls of Americans' ability to get guns. In Washington, D.C., a very large group of people marched from the White House to Capitol Hill, for a rally. Joining in the walkout were students of Columbine High School, the Littleton, Colo., site of shooting in 1999.


Clara Barton and the Red Cross
The American Red Cross, a symbol of medical help known the world over, was the creation of a shy farm girl from Massachusetts, Clara Barton. It is perhaps one of medical history's greatest examples of "filling a need."

Elizabeth Blackwell: America's First Female Doctor
Elizabeth Blackwell became a doctor at a time when women weren't let into college, let alone into medical school. She persevered, graduated, started practicing medicine, and became a hero to women across America. She did this in the 19th Century.


Nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood. Now is the time to understand more, so that we may fear less.
Marie Curie


Patrick Henry Utters Famous Line
One of the most famous speeches in American colonial history was given on March 23, 1755. This was the famous speech of Patrick Henry, noted lawyer and revolutionary.

He spoke to his fellow Virginians at St. John's Church in Richmond, urging them to take up arms in self-defense. Great Britain had gone too far in imposing taxes and other restrictions on Americans, and it was time for the colonists to defend themselves. He ended this famous speech with the words "I know now what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death."


Baroness de Laroche

She was the first of her gender to achieve something momentous in a relatively newly invented machine. She did so in 1910.

Unforgiving Places are the deserts, mountain ranges, and wastelands of the world. Find out more about these lonely yet intriguing places.

Significant Sevens are the highest, the lowest, the deepest, the farthest, the oldest, the youngest, and a host of other lists in economics, geography, history, and much more.

Cultural Icons are the instantly recognizable monuments, landforms, buildings, and many other kinds of landmarks that define a people, place, or culture.


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