It has been a year of ups and downs. With the start of every new year, hopes and expectations are high for this to be the best one yet. 2016 was a roller coaster of national news, pop culture milestones and a whole lot of YIKES. It wasn’t easy, but at least 2017 is on the horizon.
Just went it seemed like things were slowing down, 2016 threw us another curveball. From tragic and senseless violence to extremely irritating memes, there were some very high highs and some very low lows. And through it all, we were exhausted.
2016 won’t easily be forgotten. Let’s look back at the most shocking and jaw-dropping moments of the past year and then breathe a sigh of relief that it’s finally over. Thank God. 2016: It’s been real and it’s been fun, but it hasn’t been real fun so bring 0n 2017.
1. The robbery of Kim Kardashian
Kim Kardashian was on track to becoming 2016’s most fascinating celebrity figure. She was everywhere, often considered overexposed and annoying by the public. All of this changed when the superstar was robbed in Paris during a traumatizing jewelry heist.
2. The election of Donald Trump
Whether the election was a victory or a devastating loss, the results were unexpected. Trump himself seemed shocked by his presidential win. As the nation moves on, some of the tremors and after-effects of the latest electoral cycle are still able to be felt.
3. The shootings at Pulse Nightclub in Orlando, Florida
This was a tragedy that shocked the nation and made history. As nearly fifty people died and so many more were injured during the crime, the country was forced to move on while asking not only “why?” but also, “what’s next?”
4. The case of the Stanford University Survivor
The survivor, known as Emily Doe, left the country in tears with her emotional testimony, and the rapist’s extremely light sentence was a catalyst for conversation about the rights of victims and the bias of the US legal system in rape trials.
5. The division of America over racism and police brutality
The #BlackLivesMatter movement made headlines, as the names of black people killed by police officers went up. The country launched into emotional debates about whether the justice system actually did provide “justice for all.”
6. The heroin epidemic
The rate of drug-related overdoses and deaths caused by heroin skyrocketed as families and friendships were torn apart. Some of the methods of prevention were more shocking than others as police attempted to infiltrate the impending tragedies of heroin addiction.
7. The Brangelina split
There were questions about whether true love was a myth after the divorce of Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie. With every dramatic detail about Brangelina’s split coming to light, their image as a picture-perfect couple seemed to be fading away.
8. The kidnapping and discovery of Kala Brown
After a bizarre and fascinating investigation, Kala Brown was found chained in a storage bin, saying her boyfriend had been murdered and there was a serial killer on the loose. Her captor and the killer? Todd Kohlhepp, who told Brown and her boyfriend that they would be cleaning houses.
9. The murders of Madison and Taylor Sheats
Though Christy Sheats and her family appeared to be going through tough times, it was still a shock when the mother murdered both of her daughters in cold blood before being shot by police, leaving her husband to pick up the pieces.
10. Everything about Harambe
Though it’s often said that millennials don’t care about current events, Harambe proved otherwise. With the death of the Cincinnati Zoo’s solo male gorilla, memes became a currency of grief and controversy arose around the circumstances of Harambe’s untimely death.