The present period is currently defined by COVID-19, the pandemic that swept across the world in early 2020. COVID-19 was one of the fastest spreading and widespread pandemics since the Spanish flu more than 100 years ago. The pandemic took a heavy toll on American lives and shook the economic and social fabric of the U.S. The full impact of COVID-19 remains to be determined.The election of Donald Trump in 2016, a nationalistic and populist politician, shook American politics as well. The #MeToo movement went viral in 2017 and put a sharp spotlight on sexual assault. Black Lives Matter and frustration over police brutality came to a head in the summer of 2020 as protests spread across the U.S. and the world. The first female vice president, Kamala Harris, took office in 2021 with the election of president Biden. Commercial space flight took a huge leap forward when a few private companies offered the option of public space flight, for a price. The specter of another Cold War seemed imminent when Russia invaded Ukraine in early 2022, which led to immediate international condemnation, sanctions, significant financial military aid, and unification of many nations, including the U.S. under NATO.