Prairie Dogs

Named for their habitat and warning call, which sounds similar to a dog’s bark, prairie dogs are short-tailed, ground-living rodents native to the grasslands of North America. The highly social animals live in large colonies that can span hundreds of acres. Cone-shaped mounds surround the entrances to their burrows, keeping rainwater out and serving as lookout posts. Why has the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention banned the sale, trade, and transport of prairie dogs within the US? Discuss
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Peace Corps Established (1961)

In his inaugural address, US President John F. Kennedy famously tasked Americans to “ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.” Months later, he gave them the opportunity. Kennedy created the Peace Corps to promote diplomacy and counter foreign stereotypes of Americans by sending skilled volunteers to serve abroad, and since 1961, more than 200,000 people have served in nearly 140 countries. What postcard sparked a controversy in the program’s first year? Discuss
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Marshall Islands Memorial and Nuclear Victims Day

In 1954, the United States detonated Bravo, the most powerful hydrogen bomb ever tested by the United States, on Bikini Atoll in the Marshall Islands. Many of the people exposed to the fallout radiation began to experience nausea, vomiting, and itching skin and eyes. Those who were most heavily exposed suffered skin burns and later hair loss. On Memorial and Nuclear Victims Day, Marshallese people from the four atolls that were affected by the bomb and fallout gather to pray and commemorate those who were killed during the bomb testing. Discuss
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Marcus Valerius Martialis, AKA Martial (c. 38 CE)

Born in what is now Spain, Martial went as a young man to Rome, where he associated with prominent figures and won fame for his wit and poetry. He is renowned for his 12 books of epigrams—short, pithy sayings, often with a satiric or paradoxical twist. Pointed and often obscene, the poems provide a picture of Roman society during the early empire that is remarkable for its accurate portrayal of human foibles. In one verse, he accuses a man of burning down his own house for what reason? Discuss
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