It's a new year! With the ushering in of 2018, people have had their champagne, watched the ball drop, and made resolutions that they won't keep. Along with the regular festivities, another trend, that i've noticed for a few years now, is slowly growing stronger: hating the year that came before.
Social media and various news outlets have flooded the internet yelling about how terrible 2017 was. Many outlets have made the claim that Taylor Swift was the only human coming out of 2017 feeling good. Generally, a lot of the bitching about 2017 is just people on Twitter saying "2017 was the worst year ever", without giving any other context.
First, I'd like to address the Taylor Swift article by The Cut (linked above). Based off the headline alone, which points out how Taylor is straight, white, and a millionaire recording artist, I have a lot of issues. Cardi B, a black female rapper, broke records with her single "Bodak Yellow" in 2017. The XXL Freshman list introduced America to 10 new ethnic recording artists, boosting their base in 2017. The "boyband" Brockhampton, containing gay, white, black, Hispanic, and other ethnic artists, rocked America with their triple album "Saturation" and their own Vice show.
Basically, to say that the only recording artists that had a good 2017 are white and straight is boorish.
Now I will digress. I understand some horrible things happened in 2017. The Las Vegas shooting, the Manhattan ISIS truck attack, the Charlottesville attack, and the looming presence of North Korean missiles have all affected us this past year. Yes, 2017 had some bad stuff in it, but it is by far not one of the worst years the world has faced. 2001 was pretty awful, right?
Basically, any year between 1939 to 1945 would trump 2017 for the prize of "Worst Year". What about the years before equal rights for LGBT, women, black people, and other races? I think those were way worse than 2017.
Speaking of equal rights, are we going to forget that the #metoo movement happened in 2017? Are we going to forget that this movement was paramount in the defeat of Roy Moore? So many women (and some men) used 2017 as their conduit to speak out about their dealings with sexual assault. People so quickly forget that out of the awful things uncovered in 2017, so many great things have been given as a response.
I guess a lot of the complaining about 2017 is based on the simple fact that Donald Trump became president that year. As I've said before, I didn't vote in 2016 because I didn't want either candidate. I can't say one way that my life was affected by Donald Trump in 2017 (and more than likely, neither can you). I get it, Donald Trump is ugly, tweets too much, and is a garden-variety douche, but really America hasn't changed much by him being in office. More than being a "bad" president, he is just an unimpressive president (so-far).
Maybe the hatred of past years each January 1st is cathartic. Starting a new year by rejecting all the events of the past year might help us start diets, exercise, manage money better or live out whatever other resolutions we've made for the new year. Putting yourself in the mindset of "last year I made mistakes, this year I won't", is good (in essence). Just stop being so damn vehement about it.
I liked 2017 for a number of reasons. I made some great friends, received my bachelor's degree, started a fun job, and wrote some great material (some of which was published). I also wasn't as healthy as I should have been, I broke off some relationships that I now regret, and treated some people (and myself occasionally) unkindly, in 2017. I'm not saying that we have to love every aspect of the past year, but even the bad events help us grow into the new year.
I can't wait until Dec. 31st, 2018, when I have to write this whole article over again.