Hawaii was the last state to be admitted to the Union and is the only one to exist completely separate from another mainland. Geologically the islands are a collection of volcanic features. While other landmasses often shrink, the Hawaiian Islands are distinguished for their ability to grow, thanks to the continual production of lava, the substrata for the islands. In fact, consider the unique ecosystems of these volcanic and tropical islands, in combination with their remoteness to any other landmass, it seems amazing to realize the collection of flora and fauna extant on the islands. As impressive as the evolution has been, though, overdevelopment has made many of the native plants and animals endangered. Hawaii now has the dubious honor of having the longest list of endangered species in proportion to its size.
As far as population goes, Hawaii leads the Union in multicultural residents, number of Asian Americans and a surprising lack of Hispanics, proportionately. Also, if you seek good, clean living, Hawaii now boasts the longest life expectancy of any other state. Besides English, the state recently added the Hawaiian language as the alternative official language. This is why many place names are now given in English and in their Hawaiian version. Native Hawaiians comprise a subset of Polynesians.
Hawaii’s educational system is quite distinct as well. While other states have decentralized public school systems, or those run by local municipalities, Hawaii’s has remained governed by the state’s singular Department of Education.
Pearl Harbor was, and still is, a key Pacific Naval Base. On December 7, 1941, the Japanese attacked it in a brutal and unexpected air strike. This singular event officially launched the U.S. into the midst of World War II. Today Pearl Harbor is one of the most popular tourist attractions in the state.
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