With 2014 in the books, I would like to give it a year in review.
Starting with the first month; January.
Thirteen states chose to give their low wage workers a boost by raising their minimum wage at the state level. Those states are Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Missouri, Montana, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Washington.
Oregon chose to ban smoking of any kind with children present in the vehicle.
The cost for first-class stamps is increased to forty-nine cents.
President Barack Obama gives 2014 State of the Union speech, addressing the 113th US Congress.
Super Bowl XLVIII is dominated by the Seahawks, whom defeated the Broncos.
Janet Yellen defeats Ben Bernanke to become the 15th Chairperson of the Federal Reserve, becoming the first woman to hold this position.
The Obama Administration delays the employer mandate of the Affordable Care Act for the second time.
The XXII Winter Olympics takes place in Sochi, Russia. The US returns home with 9 golds, 7 silvers, and 12 bronze medals.
Bill Nye, the Science Guy, debates Creationist Ken Ham on the topic of whether creation is a viable model of origins in the modern, scientific era.
President Obama raises minimum wage for federal contract workers from $7.50 to $10.10.
Gov. Jan Brewer of Arizona vetoes a bill that would have given business owners the right to refuse service to LGBT citizens based solely on their religious convictions.
86th Academy Awards takes place. Films worth mentioning include: 12 Years a Slave, The Great Beauty, Gravity, Dallas Buyers Club, and Frozen.
Massachusetts bans taking up skirt photographs in public.
A barge carrying nearly one million gallons of oil collides with a ship in Galveston Bay off the coast of Texas, causing a fuel oil spill.
Connecticut raises its minimum wage from $8.70 to $10.10 by 2017, becoming the first state to answer President Obama’s call for an increase in the minimum wage.
Protests occur in Albuquerque, New Mexico after a video surfaces online of a March 16 fatal confrontation between local police and a homeless man.
Over seven million, a number exceeding the administration’s goal, sign up for affordable healthcare using the health insurance marketplace thanks to Obamacare.
General Motors CEO Mary Barra gives testimony in front of a congressional panel concerning the safety of their vehicles following a great recall and deaths of 13 people.
Ivan Lopez is determined to be the gunman in a shooting that killed four including himself at the Fort Hood military base in Killeen, Texas.
Microsoft discontinues support for Windows XP.
The Connecticut Huskies defeat the Kentucky Wildcats to earn the honors of National Champions of Division I National Men’s Basketball.
Governor Phil Bryant of Mississippi signs a controversial bill that will allow individuals and businesses to deny service to anyone if it conflicts with their religious beliefs.
White supremacist Frazier Glenn Miller, Jr. opens fire at a Jewish community center in Overland Park, Kansas, killing three people.
Bubba Watson wins the 2014 Masters Tournament.
Donald Sterling, owner of the Los Angeles Clippers, is banned by the NBA from attending games and is fined $2.5 million after racist comments from the owner surface online.
Governor Nathan Deal of Georgia signs the Safe Carry Protection Act into law, expanding the rights of gun owners to openly carry firearms in more public locations, such as government buildings, churches, and bars.
California Chrome wins the 2014 Kentucky Derby.
22-year-old Elliot Rodger murders 3 students by stabbing and another 3 by gunshot in Isla Vista, California near the campus of the University of California, Santa Barbara, wounding an another 13 before a self-inflcited gunshot wound to the head.
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) decides to consider two options regarding internet services: first, to permit fast and slow broadband lanes, thereby compromising net neutrality; and second, reclassify broadband as a telecommunication service, thereby preserving net neutrality.
In a 5–4 decision, the Supreme Court rules that opening prayers can precede town hall meetings without violating the Constitution.
Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric Shinseki is subpoenaed and called to Congress to respond to allegations of the department covering up wait times for veteran healthcare.
Ryan Hunter-Reay wins the 2014 Indianapolis 500, becoming the first American to win the race since 2006.
Bowe Bergdahl, the United States Army soldier who was held captive by the Taliban-aligned Haqqani network in Afghanistan since June 2009, is released back to the United States and traded for five Guantanamo Bay terrorists.
Federal district court judges rule that Oregon’s ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional.
Christopher C. Piazza, state judge in Arkansas, declares that the state’s ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional.
Same-sex marriage in Illinois is legalized.
The City Council of Seattle, Washington passes a local ordinance to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour, giving the city the highest minimum wage in the United States.
The Supreme Court, in a unanimous ruling, rules that police must have a warrant in order to search a phone or digital device.
A federal judge in Indiana strikes down the state’s same-sex marriage ban.
North Korea’s Korean Central News Agency condemns the American comedy film The Interview, promising “stern” and “merciless” retaliation if the film is released.
The Supreme Court rules in a 5-4 decision that the contraception mandate in the Affordable Care Act cannot be enforced on closely held corporations, including Oklahoma City-based arts and crafts store chain Hobby Lobby and Pennsylvania-based wood manufacturer Conestoga Wood Specialties.
President Barack Obama announces that he will send up to 300 military advisers, not troops, to Iraq to help the Sunni government and to protect the American ambassadors in the United States Embassy in the capital city of Baghdad, threatened by a heavily-armed Shiite militant group known as ISIS.
The FBI rescues 168 children from sex trafficking, many of whom had never been reported as missing.
The San Antonio Spurs defeat the Miami Heat in the 2014 NBA Finals 4 games to 1.
86 Atlanta-based workers for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are confirmed to have been unintentionally exposed to anthrax while working.
Jared Michael Padgett, age 15, opens fire at Reynolds High School in Troutdale, Oregon killing one student and then himself, as well as wounding a teacher. Everytown for Gun Safety verifies that it is the 74th school shooting in America since the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in December 2012.
Jerad and Amanda Miller open fire at a CiCi’s restaurant in Las Vegas, killing 2 police officers. They then proceed to a Wal-Mart, where they kill a civilian before getting into a firefight with police, resulting in their deaths. The couple was motivated by an aspiration to start a “revolution.”
The Los Angeles Kings defeat in double overtime against the New York Rangers in the 2014 Stanley Cup Final 4 games to 1 win.
14 people are killed, 68 more are wounded in numerous separate gun fights in Chicago, making the weekend one of the most violent periods in the city.
Washington becomes the second state to legalize the sale of recreational marijuana for use.
The Government Accountability Office releases a non-partisan study that concluded the Obama administration did not provide “effective planning or oversight practices” in developing the HealthCare.gov website.
The West Africa Ebola outbreak claims its first American life when health worker Patrick Sawyer dies in a Nigerian hospital after contracting the virus in Liberia.
President Obama announces new sanctions targeting Russia’s banking and energy sectors over Russia’s continuing involvement in the Ukraine Crisis and annexing Crimea.
Former New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin is sentenced to ten years in prison for bribery, money laundering and several other charges.
Ronald Lee Haskell Jr. kills six people in the town of Spring, Texas, all of whom were related to his ex-wife.
Barack Obama signs into law a bill allowing the Department of Veterans Affairs to have the necessary financial resources to provide adequate care for war veterans.
A magnitude 6.0 earthquake strikes Napa, California injuring 120, 6 critically.
A policeman in Ferguson, Missouri fatally shoots unarmed black teenager, Michael Brown, triggering riots and looting across the St. Louis suburb.
NASCAR driver Tony Stewart runs over and kills 20-year-old driver Kevin Ward, Jr.
The US begins targeted airstrikes on ISIS militants in Iraq to prevent an invasion of the Kurdistan Region capital city of Erbil.
Academy Award-winning actor Robin Williams commits suicide in his home at the age of 63.
Amazon purchases the live streaming site Twitch for $970 million.
A video surfaces showing James Foley, an American photojournalist held hostage in Syria, being beheaded by ISIS militants due to the US airstrike campaign in Iraq.
A group of hackers release hundreds of private photographs of around 100 individuals, most of them A-list celebrities, leading to an investigation by the FBI and criticism of Apple’s iCloud service.
Breaking Bad wins the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Drama Series.
Modern Family wins the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Comedy Series.
Eric Matthew Frein opens fire outside the Troop R barracks of the Pennsylvania State Police, killing one trooper and critically injuring another, prompting a weeks-long manhunt.
In response to several weeks of protests following the fatal shooting of Mike Brown, police in Ferguson, Missouri begin to wear body cameras donated by two private security firms.
CVS Pharmacy rebrands itself as CVS Health, phasing out cigarette sales to reflect the name change.
ISIS militants release an online video showing the beheading of American-Israeli journalist Steven Sotloff.
Home Depot says that around 56 million customer debit and credit cards are at risk after a cyber attack on their payment systems.
The United States and several Arab partners begin their airstrikes in Syria.
At a food processing plant in Moore, Oklahoma, Alton Alexander Nolan beheads coworker Colleen Hufford as a result of being fired.
Iraq War veteran Omar Gonzalez jumps the fence of the White House and allegedly enters the East Room of the building
President Obama, at the NATO summit, announces that the ISIS threat must be destroyed.
The 88th Miss America pageant is held.
The United States Department of Labor reports that in September 2014, employers added 248,000 new jobs to the U.S. economy, setting the unemployment rate to 5.9%, the lowest since July 2008 at the onset of the 2008 global financial meltdown.
Jaylen Fryberg of Marysville Pilchuck High School in Marysville, Washington, fatally shoots four students before committing suicide.
The San Francisco Giants defeat Kansas City Royals 4 games to 3 in the 2014 World Series.
Eric Matthew Frein, accused of killing a Pennsylvania State Police trooper in September, is arrested outside an abandoned airfield in Tannersville, Pennsylvania.
Zale H. Thompson attacks and injures two police officers on a New York City sidewalk before the officers killed him.
At least 45 people, 41 children, are killed, 56 injured, following a suicide bomber attack on the Akrameh al-Makhzumi school in Homs.
The United States slightly lifts a long-time ban on lethal weapon sales to Vietnam to help it improve maritime security, a historic move that comes nearly 40 years after the end of the Vietnam War.
The new One World Trade Center building in New York City is unveiled.
Clashes between al-Qaeda and authority leave 20 soldiers and 3 militants dead in Hodeidah province of western Yemen.
The 2014 senatorial, congressional, and gubernatorial elections take place.
President Obama authorizes sending back over 1,500 troops into Iraq to “combat” the Islamic State militants.
President Obama recommends the FCC reclassify broadband Internet service as a telecommunications service in order to preserve net neutrality.
ISIS militants in Syria release a video showing the beheading of American aid worker Peter Kassig, who was a recent convert to Islam.
The Supreme Court lifts the stay on a ruling overturning the ban on same-sex marriage in the state of Kansas.
President Barack Obama delivers a speech discussing his plans to use executive action to reform American policy on immigration, proposing a “common-sense, middle-ground approach” that would boot criminals and grant citizenship to the 4.4 million illegal immigrants, whom a majority have lived in the US over 5 years.
Judge Brian Morris in Montana strikes down that state’s same-sex marriage ban.
The University of Virginia elimates its fraternity program due to a controversial report in the December 2014 issue of Rolling Stone. Released on November 19, the article alleges a vicious gang rape on the UVA campus by one of the university’s fraternities.
Charles Manson successfully obtains a marriage license to marry 26-year-old Afton Elain “Star” Burton while in prison.
Ricky Jackson and Wiley Bridgeman are released from prison. Wrongfully convicted of murder in 1975 in Cleveland, Ohio, Jackson served the longest time in incarceration among those who have been released on a wrongful conviction in the US (39 years).
The Texas Board of Education approves new controversial textbooks in response to their already ridiculous textbooks, which proposed that Moses had an influence on the creation of our American democracy and negatively portrayed Muslims.
Oregon Ducks quarterback Marcus Mariota is named the most outstanding player in college football, awarded with the 2014 Heisman Trophy.
Bill Cosby, beloved actor and comedian allege of multiple case of sexual assault, steps down from his position on the Temple University’s Board of Trustees.
Senate Democrats release CIA torture report.
Bradley William Stone slaughters six people in a shooting in Salford Township, Pennsylvania.
President Obama announces the return to normal relations between America and Cuba, putting an end to the United States embargo against Cuba for the first time since January 1961.
Comedy-action hit, The Interview, is delayed by major theater chains due to threats by North Korea and a cyberhack on Sony.
A shooter guns two NYPD police officers to death sitting in their police cruiser before committing suicide in a subway station.
The US supposably withdraws from Afghanistan. A lingering force will remain until 2016 however.