By the time the ball dropped at midnight on January 1, 2020, many of us had our new year’s resolutions written down and posted on our bathroom mirrors at home and in our cubicles at work. We were all set to get this new decade started with a bang.
However, that was then, and this is now.
So far, 2020 has been one helluva year, and it’s only roughly three-quarters of the way through even though it feels like this tumultuous and stress filled time has been dragging on for half a century, if not longer.
While each new year is filled with significant moments, these past eight months of 2020 have been one for the record books. Never have we bore witness to so many world-altering, status-quo challenging events all at once. No matter the age, class, or gender, every person across the globe is struggling to adapt to the rapid changes with barely a moment to catch our breath before the next hurricane presents itself.
Between the COVID-19 pandemic, black lives matter protests, civic unrest around the world, natural disasters, and the presidential race in the United States, we are very fortunate to have limped this far. However, we still have another four months left to crawl our way to the finish line.
If we can handle this, we can handle anything, am I right?
With that in mind, let’s take a glance back at a few of the history in the making moments we’ve experienced in 2020 so far.
2020: A Quick Recap
The Impeachment of Donald Trump
As 2019 came to a close, the House of Representatives voted to impeach number 45 on two articles. This charged the President of the United States with abuse of power by requesting and permitting the involvement of Ukraine (a foreign government) in US matters, consequently compromising national security and the American democratic proceedings.
In addition, Mr. Trump used undermining tactics to obstruct Congress’ investigation into his actions by intimidating executive agencies and directing them not to provide documentation and testimony regarding his unprecedented activities that displayed a further misuse of his power as president. These two articles were submitted to the Senate in January 2020.
With this, the stage was set. People all over the world tuned into the U.S. Senate trials as members of the House presented the impeachment articles against President Trump. Trump would have been the third President to be impeached, but as we can see, he was acquitted of all charges. I guess we’ll have to wait until November to see how the political circus all plays out.
The five-time champion, legendary guard for the Lakers, and arguably one of the greatest athletes of all time, 41-year-old Kobe Bryant was killed in a helicopter crash in Southern California on January 26th. With him were his 13-year-old daughter Gianna Bryant and several others.
The news of Kobe’s death brought many of his fans to their knees and shook the sports world to its core. Kobe inspired many of us with his tenacity and his devotion to the game. His Mamba Mentality showed anyone they can be anything they want to be as long as they are willing to make the sacrifices and have the discipline necessary to put in the work needed and become the absolute best at their craft.
Number 24 left a legacy not only on the court but in the business realm as well. Bryant’s firm, Byrant Stibel, invested in Dell, Alibaba, Bodyarmor, and founded Granity Media.
Kobe Bryant will go down in history as one of the greatest people to have ever lived. A true legend forever.
In the fall of 2019, the world received reports of a “flu-like virus” that originated in China. Soon after, it began to circulate the globe just in time for the flu season. Just like every flu season, many of us didn’t give it much thought. We are all well versed in the standard protocols on how to prepare and recover during this time of year. Fast forward six months, and this isn’t your standard flu. Every country around the globe is at a standstill due to the coronavirus, aka COVID-19. As of June 30th, the WHO (World Health Organization) has stated that this pandemic has already caused half a million deaths and over 10 million confirmed cases worldwide with no end in sight. Since Corona has taken over our daily lives, many corporations and small businesses have closed their doors never to reopen again, and unemployment is at the highest level it’s been in decades. This isn’t to mention other areas of our lives that are affected, such as schools shutting down, concerts ceasing until further notice, nightlife as we know it all but over, and the travel industry limping along.
With COVID affecting our lives in every shape and fashion, especially minorities and poverty-stricken communities, we are doing all we can to survive this mentally, physically, and financially draining time and brace ourselves for an uncertain future. The politicians, health experts, and media keep emphasizing that quarantine and social distancing is the “new normal.” Still, there is nothing ordinary about living in a society that forces you to separate from each other. I’m hoping by the end of 2020 we will find a new way to reconnect with our loved ones and associates while still being able to keep each other safe and healthy.
Only time will tell.
Black People Vs. America
Welcome to 2020, where black lives are still being taken by the hands of racist Americans solely based on the color of our skin.
In the spring of this year, George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery were murdered. George and Breonna’s lives were snatched away by crooked cops in Minnesota and Louisville, respectively, and Ahmaud’s life was cut short by a father and son in Atlanta who decided to take the law into their own hands. These three deaths, along with the countless others who have been taken away from their loved ones because America refuses to confront the issue of systematic racism that has plagued this country for centuries, sparked a raging fire that is felt in all 50 states and many countries worldwide.
These events ignited protests and riots against racism and police brutality from the east coast to the west coast, north to south, and everywhere in between. We the people have come together to stand up and say enough is enough. This injustice and oppression of black people will no longer be tolerated, and we are willing to fight to have our voices heard and to bring changes not only in the police departments but in government as well. Even though the media is showing less and less coverage of protests and the murder victims’ names are no longer trending on twitter, the war against racism is still alive and well. Many demonstrations for racial justice are still being organized, and we will be taking our voices to the voting booths coming November.
Maybe one day, we will live in a world where racism has been demolished, and people will genuinely live a life of liberty and justice. Until then, the fight continues.
These are just a few of the events that have shaped 2020 so far. The start of a new decade seemed so promising, but with a global pandemic, recession, civil unrest brewing, and a presidential election, no one knows what the future holds. Everything we planned on doing in 2020 has ultimately been put on hold.
For many of us, this is the most pivotal time in our lives. It is time to align ourselves with what really matters. To heal and strengthen our minds, bodies, and spirits from what has already taken place and brace ourselves for what is to come. It is also a time to spend reconnecting with our family and friends that truly love us and to rid ourselves of anything and everything that doesn’t serve us and to refocus our minds on our purpose. This is the only way we will come out as better human beings during this chaotic time. Only then will we see real change in this world.
We are all in this together.
See you on the other side.
In our effort to celebrate creativity, we rounded up six individuals who not only have their hands in our culture but who are also establishing themselves as ambassadors of all things cool.
Let’s take a look at the book Powernomics: The National Plan to Empower Black America by Dr. Claud Anderson who emphasizes the importance of education, politics, resources, and economics to rebuild and uplift the Black community.
St. Patrick’s Day 2020 marked the last time I stepped into my cubicle in Berkeley, California, shared a meal with a co-worker, or cracked jokes about our day as we walked to our cars after our shift was over. And, the honest truth is, I don’t miss it.