Recapping the “worst year ever”: 2020

2020 was a horrible year for many, here’s a small list of the negative impacts 2020 had on the world

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Deemed the “worst year ever” 2020 was a tough time for everyone, due to climate catastrophes, the COVID-19 pandemic, police brutality, and more. (Photo via pixabay)

Madison Duong, Staff Writer

Looking back on the year 2020, there seems to have been more bad than good. There’s a long list of horrible things that happened in 2020, everything from natural disasters, devastating diseases, social unrest and more. It is safe to say that 2020 has been the worst year many people have experienced.

At the start of 2020, Australia experienced many severe wildfires, causing properties to be burnt, wild animals losing their homes, and human casualties as well. Not only did wildfires have a negative impact on Australia, they also hit home in California. 

“As of the end of the year, nearly 10,000 fires had burned over 4.2 million acres, more than 4% of the state’s roughly 100 million acres of land, making 2020 the largest wildfire season recorded in California’s modern history,” according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection’s website.

COVID-19 posed one of the biggest challenges as the pandemic spread worldwide. The virus was known to have originated in Wuhan City, China in December 2019; in October of 2020, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention acknowledged that one major way the coronavirus is spread is through airborne transmission.

In order to prevent the spread of the COVID-19, many countries, including the United States, imposed travel bans, stay at home orders, and new policies of mask requirements and social distancing. Adapting to a new way of living hasn’t been an easy feat as things changed so quickly.

Plenty of students were also affected as education quickly moved online. There was also the issue of people losing their jobs and others risking their lives as essential workers.

American River Community College engineering major Jean Solorio says it was difficult for him to adapt to the changes the pandemic caused.

“Online classes were difficult to get accustomed to because of the lack of familiarity with Zoom and online meetings,” Solorio said. “I also had to give up a semester or two of school to make sure I still had a job and that I can appeal to my boss and managers that I am still worth investing in as an employee to the business.”

Systemic racism became a high-profile public issue in the year 2020 with the death of an African-American man, George Floyd, who was killed by a Minneapolis police officer, Derek Chauvin. 

ARC student Madison Vue says that she became more knowledgeable on systemic racism in the year 2020.

When the George Floyd incident happened, and [I saw the] video that was spreading through all social media platforms where a white lady threatened to call the cops on a black man [in Central Park in New York] for doing absolutely nothing, the two incidents made me so mad and frustrated,” Vue said. “Seeing both perspectives made me realize I need to stop enabling these horrible things and that I need to speak up about the issue.”  

Social activism was in the spotlight as the Black Lives Matter movement grew in an effort to educate the public about systemic racism and police brutality.

“What I love about the protests is that you were able to see how powerful of a community we can be when we come together,” Vue said. “Never have I ever been so proud to see strangers fighting to let their voices be heard.”

2020 was a challenging year that brought many obstacles to overcome, such as adapting to a new lifestyle to prevent the spread of coronavirus, seeing wildfires cause severe damage to different parts of the earth, and seeing the issue of systemic racism in America become more exposed.