Top 10 Wildest Moments in 2022

It seems like every year since 2020, world events get crazier. I genuinely believe we are living in the 2020s –– a new decade that echoes the events of the first decade in the 1920s. In the past two years, we have experienced a pandemic, recession, inflation, wars, deaths, wealth inequality, and so much stress. Every year I keep wondering if things will improve in the world, but clearly not. We live in historical times and maybe ten years later we’ll look back at this and laugh…or cry.

So as the year comes to an end, here are my top ten wildest moments:

#1: Pandemic no more?

Two years of COVID-19 infections and deaths and it’s left our world in a scary and uncertain place. We experienced breakthroughs in healthcare with the arrival of vaccines and societal chaos in the aftermath of the pandemic. Earlier this year, the new Omicron variant came but the symptoms were milder yet spread faster. By that time, we already started initiating vaccine and booster shots nationwide. The world continued to open up more for events and social outings and mask restrictions loosened. I think around April people were already done with the pandemic and wanted to move on with life because this strain was less dangerous and flu-like.

We should still protect ourselves from the virus the best way we can and people are still getting infected, but at least we’re in a better place now.

#2: Uvalde Mass Shooting

Of course, another mass shooting in America, and this was probably the deadliest. A teenage gunman went into an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, and massacred 19 children and two teachers in a classroom. The bodies of the children were so desecrated that the parents had to come in and identify their children by the shoes and clothing that they wore. Perhaps the biggest issue with this massacre was the cowardice, callousness, and neglect of the police force in stopping the gunman. They waited by the locked door for an hour before entering the classroom and barred parents from rescuing their children. A federal and state investigation into the leadership of the police force produced dismal results.

#3: Russia invades Ukraine

February 2022. After a series of threats by Russian President Vladimir Putin, he officially authorized his army to mobilize on Ukrainian soil. Since the invasion/occupation by Russian forces, bombs have destroyed cities and infrastructure, thousands of people have fled the country, and rampant disinformation has spread all over the internet and Russian media. The U.S. Congress and the Biden administration have sent billions of dollars in aid and weapons to the Ukrainian government and that has not received widespread support.

The war also revealed how western media’s coverage of wars is steeped in racist bias and xenophobia. Many people on social media called out reporters and anchors who said that wars in non-western countries are standard and a reflection of the people.

#4: WNBA Star Brittney Griner’s imprisonment in Russia

Brittney Griner’s incarceration and release in Russia right before the holidays comes after a nationwide campaign primarily from WNBA players and the black community. She is black, gay, and a woman, and in my opinion her arrest was a political ploy by the Kremlin to antagonize the U.S. for their involvement in Ukraine. Griner was an easy target and collateral damage. Earlier this year Griner was arrested for minor possession of marijuana cartridges that she said she needed for dealing with anxiety. Read more about the political and social conversation about her arrest.

#5: Elon Musk’s whole situation with Twitter.

A chaotic billionaire of the worst kind. Musk bragged to his #Twitter followers and the media that he will bring back freedom of speech on the platform and will make the social media app better. He arranged a deal with Twitter and bought it out for $44 billion dollars. Since the acquisition, he’s proven how much of an incompetent CEO and person he is. Read more about the timeline of Musk’s Twitter takeover.

#6: Biden administration and student loan debt relief plan

In a previous post on my blog, I wrote about why we might never get student loan debt relief from the government. However, between August and November this year, the Biden administration announced that they will provide relief for millions of Americans and as a fellow debtor, I was excited about this news. His administration said debtors would have to fill out a simple form that would be archived by the Department of Education until relief is sent in January. However, the bliss didn’t last long because around the November midterms and since then, the DOE announced they’re pausing applications because of lawsuits that it’s unconstitutional. Learn more about how this case could be argued in the Supreme Court.

#7: Queen Elizabeth II passes away after more than 50 years on the throne.

From news media to the general public, the queen represented a united front as the figurehead in the U.K. Her death comes after a slew of issues within the British monarchy, including the death of Princess Diana, numerous divorces of her children, WWII, the breakup of British colonial rule in several countries, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s departure from being senior royals, and so much more. The heir to the throne, Prince Charles, will be coronated as King in 2023 and will face a populace that may not want a monarchy anymore because of economic hardship, xenophobia, racism, and the pandemic.

#8: Johnny Depp v. Amber Heard trial

This trial had everyone glued to their TV and computer screens. It had the comedic and dramatic elements of a TV show. This was the first court trial I watched in its entirety. I was thoroughly engaged and so were my coworkers, friends, and most of the country. Johnny Depp sued Amber Heard for defamation about domestic abuse allegations against him based on an op-ed she wrote for the Washington Post. Depp’s lawyers became stars, particularly Camille Vazquez, who primarily spoke for him in the courtroom. The trial was held in Fairfax, Virginia because the publishing center for the Washington Post is in Springfield, Virginia. It was probably the first excitement Fairfax has received in years.

#9: Ticketmaster implodes from Taylor Swift ticket sales

I’ve only used Ticketmaster once and that was when I went to my first concert seeing the band Twenty One Pilots. I had a good experience using their site, but Taylor Swift fans did not. Earlier this year, Taylor Swift announced the Eras tour which was her first tour in years and fans rushed to Ticketmaster to buy tickets. Ticketmaster’s website was flooded with payments until the website crashed. Some people lost their cue in line and some lost money thinking they purchased the tickets when they didn’t. Read more about the Ticketmaster fiasco here.

#10: Harry and Meghan Netflix documentary

This documentary was a chance for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex to tell their side of the story about how the British tabloids viciously attacked Meghan primarily and Harry during their time as senior working members of the royal family. It was six episodes and about an hour long in each episode. I saw the documentary and the only inquiries I had were about Meghan’s upbringing as a black biracial woman from California. I wanted them to go deeper into why Meghan’s mom did not have more conversations with her daughter about racism. It would have benefitted Meghan I think in understanding the dynamics of her experience today; though she’s always acknowledged she’s biracial.

What were your top moments of 2022? Comment below.

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