Photo Illustration by Peter Caty

The transition between 2009 and 2010 brought with it many notable events throughout the world, in politics and entertainment.

Earthquake in Haiti
Just before 5 p.m. on Jan. 12, 2010, a devastating earthquake hit just ten miles southwest of Port-au-Prince, the capital of Haiti. The United Nations officials have estimated 50,000 fatalities, while other estimates run as high as 200,000. On January 13th, President Obama promised Ban Ki-Moon, the secretary general of the United Nations that Haiti would have the “unwavering support” of the United States.

There are many charities and organizations that are pitching in to help. Doctors Without Borders, Red Cross, and Partners in Health are a few of the organizations who are taking donations.

Christmas Day Attempted Bombing
On Christmas Day, a Nigerian man, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallah, 23, attempted to detonate a bomb as the Northwest plane carrying 290 people made its descent into Detroit. He tried to trigger an explosion on Flight 253 from Amsterdam using chemicals hidden under his clothing. According to a statement released by President Obama on Dec. 28, the man was in the system, but was not on the “no-fly” list. Passengers and crew restrained him until the aircraft landed.

New York Passes Medical  Marijuana Bill
On Monday, Jan. 11, 2010, the state of New Jersey approved the legalization of marijuana to help patients with chronic  illness. Patients diagnosed with severe illnesses including cancer, Lou Gehrig’s disease, muscular dystrophy and multiple sclerosis now have access to marijuana grown and distributed through the state-monitored dispensaries. Despite last minute reservations, the bill passed in both houses: 48-14 in the General Assembly and 25-13 in the State Senate.

Conan versus Jay Leno versus NBC
On Sunday Jan. 10, 2010, NBC announced that effective Feb. 12, 2010, “The Jay Leno Show” will no longer air at 10 p.m. The decision has been meet with controversial reactions ever since it hit the public over a week ago. See Entertainment for more on the hot topic.

Loss of 85,000 Jobs in December
On Friday Jan. 8, 2010, the Labor Department reported that during the month of December, which most economists figured would be a great job-generator, there was instead a net loss of 85,000 jobs. Although the unemployment rate has stayed at a steady 10 percent, economists fear it will increase in the coming months.

Sen. Christopher Dodd Will Not Seek Re-election
Sen. Christopher Dodd (R-Conn.), announced that he will not seek re-election and will retire from his long career in the United States Senate. At a press conference held just after his announcement he said, “I’m very proud of the job I’ve done and the results delivered.” Dodd also told reporters, “None of us is irreplaceable. None of us are indispensable, and those who think otherwise are dangerous.”

China found attacking Google
On Tuesday, Jan. 12, Google announced someone was breaking into its software, believed to be Chinese. China’s involvement was confirmed.

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