Andrés Martinez wrote for Zocalo Public Square about the historical significance of August:
The headlines these days all seem to demand exclamation marks. Iraq is teetering on the brink! Russian troops are massing on the Ukrainian border! Gaza lies in ruins! World’s worst Ebola epidemic afflicts Africa!
Oh, and it is also National Goat Cheese Month. Welcome to another quiet and peaceful August.
Yeah, right. One of the puzzles of summer is why so many of us persist in pretending that August is a month when nothing happens, when we can step back, tune out, take a break, and recharge. Europeans even think they are entitled to take the entire month off.
Perhaps there’s something about late summer, a couple months gone since school let out in June, that makes us forget our history. This year, August is full of reminders. We’re commemorating the 40th anniversary of President Richard Nixon’s resignation and the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of World War I.