Keeping Up with Current Events

CLP Current Event: March 5, 2019

Being informed is a citizen responsibility. The news needs updating and monitoring for additional facts and for accuracy. CLP is here to help with updated articles on recent Current Events.

Brought to teachers by Susie Marcus, CLP consultant, with CLP staff.

News Sources

Measles (3 total)
Measles cases at ‘alarmingly’ high levels around the world, UNICEF says, by Nina Avramova, CNN, February 28. 2019
“Around the globe, 98 countries saw an increase in measles cases in 2018, UNICEF said. The agency also stressed that there were several countries, including Brazil, Colombia, Chile and Peru, that reported no measles cases in 2017 but saw the disease make a comeback last year.”

States Move To Restrict Parents’ Refusal To Vaccinate Their Kids, by Patti Neighmond, NPR, February 28, 2019
“But this winter’s outbreaks of measles across the nation are resulting in challenges to many exemptions: At least eight states, including some that have experienced measles outbreaks this year, want to remove personal exemptions for the measles vaccine. And some states would remove the exemption for all vaccines.”

Cost of Washington measles outbreak tops $1M, by The SeattleTimes, The Oregonian, February 23, 2019
“DOH has spent approximately $614,000 on staff and supplies as of Tuesday, in addition to about $115,000 in other non-budgeted expenditures, according to state epidemiologist Dr. Scott Lindquist, who expects the total response to eventually cost the state ‘well over a million dollars.’”

Venezuela (3 total)
Juan Guaidó vows to return to Venezuela after border chaos, by Dave Lawler, Axios, February 28, 2019
“Guaidó says he will return to Caracas this weekend despite fears he might be arrested for orchestrating the showdown at the border last Saturday. Jailing Guaidó would cross a U.S. red line and raise the risk of military confrontation.”

Venezuela’s political crisis: How did we get here?, by Ed Payne, 13ABC, February 25, 2019
“Government and opposition forces are struggling for political power in Venezuela, a country hamstrung by economic chaos and widespread shortages. Millions can’t afford the basics in life, and the violence is spreading to the borders where aid shipments have been blocked. As the crisis in the South American nation deepens, here are some things you’ll need to know about Venezuela’s political situation.”

Venezuela crisis: Colombia border points closed amid aid stand-off, BBC, February 23, 2019
“Hundreds of tonnes of humanitarian aid sitting just outside Venezuela’s borders have become a flashpoint between Mr. Guaidó and President Maduro. Mr. Maduro has so far refused to allow the aid, which includes food and medicine, to cross over into Venezuela. Mr. Guaidó has vowed that hundreds of thousands of volunteers will help bring it in on Saturday.”

National Emergency (2 total)
Trump says he will veto resolution terminating national emergency, by Phil Helsel, NBC News, February 28, 2019
“The Trump administration earlier this week said that if the resolution were presented to the president in its current form that ‘his advisors would recommend that he veto it.’”

House passes resolution to overturn Trump’s emergency declaration on border wall, by Clare Foran and Alex Rogers, CNN, February 26, 2019
“The vote was 245-182. Thirteen Republicans voted with Democrats to pass the measure. The resolution will next be taken up by the Senate, where it will put Republican unity to the test, though Senate leaders have signaled they will not bring it to a vote immediately. It is not yet clear how many Republicans will vote for the resolution in the Senate, but it looks likely to pass the upper chamber, despite the fact that Republicans hold a majority. That would be yet another blow to the President, who has said he will veto the resolution if it comes to his desk.”

Questions to Consider

Media Literacy

  • Is knowledge about current events a citizen obligation? If so why?
  • What might be the results of being informed?
  • What might be the results of ignoring the news?
  • What are the most important skills to use in order to be an informed person?
  • Where does multiple source research rank? Where does evaluation of information rank? Where does suspension of judgement rank?
  • What is civic literacy?
  • What is civic engagement?


  • Is the measles outbreak a local, national and international problem?
  • Should vaccination laws be changed to prevent the spread of measles?
  • What are the reasons that people have for objecting to the measles vaccine (MMR)?


  • What is the best path towards a non-violent return to democracy in Venezuela?
  • Is international intervention helpful or hurtful?
  • How will the humanitarian crisis be mitigated?
  • Why is Venezuela important to the future of Latin America?

Background and More

Media Literacy
Back to the News, by Jim Paterson, Education World

Don’t Ignore The News, by Maggie Pollard, The Mycenaean, December 13, 2016
CLP: Written by the senior editor of a high school newspaper

Informed Citizenry, Study Mode Research, September 21, 2010
CLP: Requires account to read entire article

Measles, Civics Learning Project, January 29, 2019

Crisis in Venezuela, Civics Learning Project, February 5, 2019

National Emergency
Declaration of Emergency, Civics Learning Project, February 19, 2019

Lesson Plans

Are We Being Bad Citizens If We Don’t Keep Up With the News?, by Natalie Proulx, The Learning Network, March 20, 2018
CLP: Middle & High School

Current Events Awareness/Media Literacy, PBS
CLP: Middle & High School

Citizen Watchdogs and the News, Facing History and Ourselves
CLP: Middle & High School

Constitutional and Legal Connections

Why freedom of the press is more important now than ever, by Patrick D’Arcy, TED, August 11, 2017

Oregon Connections

None this week.

Oregon State Social Science Standards

8.8 Evaluate information from a variety of sources and perspectives.
8.21 Analyze important political and ethical values such as freedom, democracy, equality and justice embodied in documents such as the Declaration of Independence, the United States Constitution, and the Bill of Rights.
8.26 Examine a controversial event, issue, or problem from more than one perspective.
HS.28 Evaluate how governments interact at the local, state, tribal, national, and global levels.
HS.33 Explain the role of government in various current events.
HS.35 Examine the pluralistic realities of society (e.g., race, poverty, gender and age), recognizing issues of equity, and evaluating need for change.
HS.59 Demonstrate the skills and dispositions needed to be a critical consumer of information.
HS.60. Analyze an event, issue, problem, or phenomenon from varied or opposing perspectives or points of view.

We the People Lesson Connections

Middle School, Level 2

  • Unit 6, Lesson 29: What are the rights and responsibilities of citizenship?
  • Unit 6, Lesson 30: How might citizens participate in civic affairs?

High School, Level 3

  • Unit 6, Lesson 34: What is the importance of civic engagement to American constitutional democracy?
  • Unit 6, Lesson 37: What key challenges does the United States face in the future?