Although we've still got quite a ways to go, 2016 has already presented many reasons to go down in the books. From America's Next Top Model moving to VH1 and receiving a new host to one of the most intriguing Presidential elections to date, the year has so far been a huge success at making heads spin. Here are just a few events that sent me off my rocker:
20. Victoria’s Secret’s decision to stop selling swimwear and all other merchandise besides lingerie. This resulted in the cringes of teen-aged and middle-aged women alike, but enjoying major discounts on swimwear and apparel was pretty nice.
19. After spiraling into a violent tirade resulting in Evan’s beloved red v-neck being ripped and a Go Fund Me page created to replace Evan’s tragic loss, Chad from "The Bachelorette" was invited to be on "Bachelor in Paradise." In true character, Chad spent his only night in Paradise drunkenly degrading women and pooping his swimming trunks.
Yes, "The Chad" is pictured above shoving a raw sweet potato into his mouth. Casual.
18. Period-absorbing underwear are now a trend, and
I’m not really sure how to feel about it. Whoops, did I just expose that I
haven’t hopped on this bandwagon? I’m totally not trendy. Lizzie McGuire is an
17. News dropped that Tyra Banks will no longer be the judge of "America’s Next Top Model." I strongly encourage a moment of silence for all of Tyra’s wise insights and moments of overall fierceness on the show including this one, which is by far my favorite:
16. Beyoncé dropped “Lemonade” and everyone went nuts for it. Countless computers, countless free streaming attempts, countless viruses, all for the chance to experience Beyoncé doing what she does best. It was all totally worth it. And by the way, Jay Z, please get your act together and treat Queen B like the royalty she is.
15. Pokémon Go happened and now congregations of cars at gas stations warranting police attendance are probably just people catching Pokémon.
14. People are seemingly outraged at the most recent “Ghostbusters” having a female cast. I mean, we could keep an open mind and celebrate the successes of these women instead of being bitter. But hey, that’s just a suggestion.
13. Kim Kardashian exposed Taylor Swift as a snake over Snapchat. Lifelong haters popped open bottles of champagne while loyal fans dating back to 2011 cried out of betrayal. When Taylor Gang crept out of the woodwork to defend their leader on Twitter, Khloe, armed with but hole pictures, was ready to end them.
12. Melania Trump’s speech for the Republican National Convention sounded eerily familiar. Oh yeah, that’s because it was almost identical to Michelle Obama’s speech at the Democratic National Convention in 2008. It’s okay Melania, sometimes I don’t do my homework either.
11. Tomi Lahren is still yelling stupid sh*t on television. Relax conservatives, I understand that this is my opinion and that Tomi can voice hers as well, no matter how offensive. But does she really have to yell? I think she should tone her aggression down a few notches to reach a state of humble assertion. Then again, some people seem to enjoy her angry tangents. To each his own, they’re just not my cup of tea.
10. The top five 2016 Miss Teen USA contestants were all pretty much carbon copies of one another, making for a pretty tough decision. I’m sure young women of various races felt beautiful and empowered when they tuned into that one. It’s so wonderful that they have such a wide selection of great role models to choose from. The winner of the competition, Karlie Hay (Miss Texas), came with an ugly Twitter history containing racial slurs. Granted, the tweets were from 2013, but come on, really?
9. Harambe, the gorilla that was killed at the Cincinnati Zoo for taking a three year old on a swim, sparked quite the meme craze. Although this was a tragic incident raising heated ethical debates, the Harambe memes are pretty entertaining.
8. Brexit. Whenever J.K. Rowling voices her disappointment with politics over social media, you know it was a bad move. It’s her word above all. J.K. Rowling thinks with her heart, yet has the most logical views of any influential figure I follow. Okay, let me stop before this turns into a love letter.
7. The continuation of the water crisis in Flint, Michigan. This has gone on for nearly three years and the media pretty much ignores it now. Yet, the people of Flint still do not have clean drinking water and are being poisoned by corrosive water from the Flint River. All of this was brought about by state officials making the switch from the Lake Huron water supply to Flint in an effort to save money. They then refused to pay for the chemical that would make the water less acidic, and therefore safer to use. Flint residents were unaware that their drinking water contained lead for almost two years, and the problem still hasn't been corrected now that they are fully aware.
6. When Donald Trump first announced he was running for President, most of us thought it was a joke. Now he’s got a serious shot at getting into the White House-– and believe me, I’m a pretty laid back girl but I still hesitate to associate the term “serious” with Donald Trump.
5. The shenanigans of this entire Presidential election. That is all.
4. ISIS continues to breed false, overgeneralized assumptions about the religion of Islam, making daily life in America extremely difficult for the Muslim community. While they’re at it, they continue taking lives, recruiting young men and women into their terrorist organization and wreaking terror throughout the world.
3. The 2016 summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro-– a devastatingly beautiful city ravaged by pollution, economic instability and steep crime rates. The ugliness starkly contrasts with the triumphs and international unity that the Olympic Games entail. This year, the United States is sending many decorated Olympians including Michael Phelps---the man, the myth, the legend---to Rio for another shot at taking home the gold. Along with the veterans come new standouts, such as Simone Biles on the USA Women's Gymnastics team, who are expected to accomplish great things for team USA.
2. The trend of countering Black Lives Matter with All Lives Matter. It is an elementary understanding that all lives matter, or at least in an ideal world they should. What’s obviously not understood is the B.S. those who are not born into white privilege have to endure, which is why it is absolutely necessary to say Black Lives Matter. Those are my final thoughts (@TomiLahren).
1. The tragedy at Pulse Nightclub in Orlando. People went out that night meaning to have fun and celebrate love. These same people with such innocent intentions ended up as victims of one of the largest mass shootings in U.S. history.
Although I am clearly bashing 2016, I will never forget to be grateful for living the life that I do. I’m grateful that I live in America where democracy prevails regardless of how corrupted that democracy may seem. I’m grateful that I am afforded the liberty to exercise my reproductive rights and love whoever I may choose blind of gender. I’m grateful that I have access to an education. I’m grateful that as a woman, I am able to publicly voice my opinions. In some parts of the world, women are persecuted for advertising their beliefs, women who don’t dare allow themselves to even dream of overstepping their boundaries. There are human beings out there who aren’t allowed to be human. There are people that are born into a world that deprives them of basic rights, left with no choice but to attempt to cultivate a life out of the infertile soil they landed upon. Being able to publish my thoughts without fear of legal or governmental repercussion is a luxury that I am well aware of. I’m glad that in 2016, America has seen both a black president and a female presidential nominee. I’m glad that we have progressed, and that I can realistically allow myself to hope that is what we will continue to do.
Anyway, I'm pumped to see what 2016 has in store for the next couple of months. Hopefully the tail end will be just as juicy as the beginning. Until the next big story drops, let's continue to vibe to "Lemonade" and pray for Harambe.