December 31, 2012

2012 is Ending

Goodbye 2012.

2012 Predictions Revisited


Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich
Android 4.0 introduces a completely new approach to securing a device, making each person’s device even more personal — Face Unlock is a new screen-lock option that lets users unlock their devices with their faces. It takes advantage of the device front-facing camera and state-of-the-art facial recognition technology to register a face during setup and then to recognize it again when unlocking the device. Users just hold their devices in front of their faces to unlock, or use a backup PIN or pattern.

November 24, 2012

Merry Secularization

It turns out that "Merry Christmas" is a legacy of the book that also "did help to secularize Christmas in a lot of ways."


November 8, 2012

15,000 Days: Last Mass

On 15 October 1971, the few remaining Chagossians held a last Mass in the island's one church.

Wikipedia: Depopulation of Diego Garcia

November 1, 2012

American Diabetes Month

S.Res. 327: A resolution supporting the goals and ideals of American Diabetes Month
Whereas according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (referred to in this preamble as ``CDC''), nearly 26,000,000 people of the United States have diabetes and 79,000,000 people of the United States have pre-diabetes

October 31, 2012

International Bridge 50th Anniversary

Mr. LEVIN. Mr. President, the International Bridge at Sault St. Marie stands as an enduring, visible reminder of the connection Michigan has with our neighbor to the north. This nearly 2-mile expanse, quite literally, brings communities in Michigan and Canada closer together, forging a mutually beneficial partnership in the process. To commemorate the construction of the bridge, a new, patriotic lighting scheme will be introduced on the American side of the bridge this week.

October 12, 2012

Recognizing the 100th Anniversary of Rice University

Mrs. HUTCHISON (for herself and Mr. Cornyn) submitted the following resolution; which was considered and agreed to:

Whereas Rice University is celebrating its 100th year as a renowned research university advancing education in the arts, humanities, and sciences;

Whereas the William Marsh Rice Institute for the Advancement of Literature, Science, and Art, named for its benefactor William Marsh Rice and now known as Rice University, was inaugurated on October 12, 1912, in Houston, Texas;

September 4, 2012

30 Years: Munich massacre

The Munich massacre is an informal name for events that occurred during the 1972 Summer Olympics in Munich, Bavaria in southern West Germany, when members of the Israeli Olympic team were taken hostage and eventually killed by the Palestinian group Black September.

Shortly after the crisis began, the Palestinians demanded the release of 234 prisoners held in Israeli jails.

Black September called the operation "Ikrit and Biram", after two Christian Palestinian villages whose inhabitants were expelled by the Haganah in 1948.

Israel wants one minute of silence to remember them at the 2012 Games.

September 1, 2012

61 Years: United States-Australia Alliance

S.Res. 324: A resolution commemorating the 60th Anniversary of the United States-Australia alliance

Whereas the United States Government enhanced its relationship with the Governments of Australia and New Zealand with the signing of the Australia-New Zealand-United States (ANZUS) Treaty on September 1, 1951, and subsequently engaged in annual, bilateral Australian-United States Ministerial (AUSMIN) consultations between the Australian Ministers of Foreign Affairs and Defence and the United States Secretaries of State and Defense, including a meeting in San Francisco in September 2011 that commemorated the 60th anniversary of the United States-Australia alliance;

July 11, 2012

Rock Island Arsenal's 150th Anniversary

Mr. DURBIN. I rise today to celebrate a major milestone for Illinois and the nation. One hundred and fifty years ago on July 11, 1862, Illinois' own President Lincoln signed an Act of Congress that established the Rock Island Arsenal.

Rock Island started out during the Civil War as a small Union prisoner of war camp which also held and distributed supplies. It has grown into a critical manufacturer of 21st century supplies for our troops in the field. And in doing so, it also serves as the lifeblood of the Quad Cities region that hosts it.

In celebration of its 150th anniversary, I would like to highlight Rock Island Arsenal's impressive history and the impact it has had on the community and the nation.

July 1, 2012

The 225th anniversary of the signing of the Constitution of the United States

A resolution (S. Res. 376) commemorating the 225th anniversary of the signing of the Constitution of the United States and recognizing the contributions of the National Society of the Sons of the American Revolution and the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution, and for other purposes.

May 5, 2012

Cinco de Mayo

[Page: S2745]  GPO's PDF 


Mr. MENENDEZ (for himself, Mr. CORNYN, Mr. REID of Nevada, Mr. DURBIN, Mr. UDALL of Colorado, and Mr. BENNET) submitted the following resolution; which was considered and agreed to:

S. Res. 167

Whereas May 5, or ``Cinco de Mayo'' in Spanish, is celebrated each year as a date of great importance by the Mexican and Mexican-American communities;

Whereas the Cinco de Mayo holiday commemorates May 5, 1862, the date on which the Battle of Puebla was fought by Mexicans who were struggling for their independence and freedom;

Whereas Cinco de Mayo has become one of the most famous Mexican national holidays and is celebrated annually by nearly all Mexicans and Mexican-Americans, north and south of the United States-Mexico border;

Whereas the Battle of Puebla was but one of the many battles that the courageous Mexican people won in their long and brave struggle for independence and freedom;

Whereas the French, confident that their battle-seasoned troops were far superior to the almost amateurish Mexican forces, expected little or no opposition from the Mexican army;

Whereas the French army, which had not experienced defeat against any of the finest troops of Europe in more than half a century, sustained a disastrous loss at the hands of an outnumbered, ill-equipped, and ragged, but highly spirited and courageous, Mexican force;

Whereas after three bloody assaults on Puebla in which more than a thousand gallant Frenchmen lost their lives, the French troops were finally defeated and driven back by the outnumbered Mexican troops;

Whereas the courageous and heroic spirit that Mexican General Zaragoza and his men displayed during that historic battle can never be forgotten;

Whereas many brave Mexicans willingly gave their lives for the causes of justice and freedom in the Battle of Puebla on Cinco de Mayo;

Whereas the sacrifice of the Mexican fighters was instrumental in keeping Mexico from falling under European domination;

Whereas Cinco de Mayo serves as a reminder that the foundation of the United States is built by people from many nations and diverse cultures who are willing to fight and die for freedom;

Whereas Cinco de Mayo also serves as a reminder of the close ties between the people of Mexico and the people of the United States;

Whereas in a larger sense, Cinco de Mayo symbolizes the right of a free people to self-determination, just as Benito Juarez once said, ``El respeto al derecho ajeno es la paz'' (``The respect of other people's rights is peace''); and

Whereas many people celebrate during the entire week in which Cinco de Mayo falls: Now, therefore, be it

Resolved, That the Senate--

(1) recognizes the historical struggle for independence and freedom of the people of Mexico; and

(2) calls upon the people of the United States to observe Cinco de Mayo with appropriate ceremonies and activities.

(Senate - May 5, 2011)

January 27, 2012

45 Years: Apollo 1 Fire

1967Apollo 1 astronauts GrissomWhite, and Chaffee died in the cockpit fire on the launch pad during a test.

National Day of Remembrance for Americans Downwind from Nuclear Testing Sites


   Whereas on January 27, 1951, the first of years of nuclear weapons tests was conducted at a site known as the Nevada Proving Ground, located approximately 65 miles northwest of Las Vegas, Nevada;
   Whereas the extensive testing at the Nevada Proving Ground came just years after the first ever nuclear weapon test, which was conducted on July 16, 1945, at what is known as the Trinity Atomic Test Site, located approximately 35 miles south of Socorro, New Mexico;
   Whereas many Americans who, during the Cold War, worked and lived downwind from nuclear testing sites (referred to in this preamble as ``downwinders'') were adversely affected by the radiation exposure generated by the above ground nuclear weapons testing, and some of the downwinders sickened as a result of the radiation exposure;
   Whereas the downwinders paid a high price for the development of a nuclear weapons program for the benefit of the United States; and
   Whereas the downwinders deserve to be recognized for the sacrifice they have made for the defense of the United States: Now, therefore, be it
    Resolved, That the Senate--
    (1) designates January 27, 2012, as a national day of remembrance for Americans who, during the Cold War, worked and lived downwind from nuclear testing sites and were adversely affected by the radiation exposure generated by the above ground nuclear weapons testing; and
    (2) encourages the people of the United States to support and participate in appropriate ceremonies, programs, and other activities to commemorate January 27, 2012.

(Senate - November 16, 2011)

January 5, 2012

1972: Space Shuttle Program Announced

President Nixon's 1972 Announcement on the Space Shuttle

Richard Nixon

President Richard M. Nixon and NASA Administrator James C. Fletcher announced the Space Shuttle program had received final approval in San Clemente, California, on 5 January 1972.

Statements by President Nixon and NASA Administrator James Fletcher
5 January 1972

HT: This Week in Space, January 2, 2012