It’s hard to remember a time when every piece of breaking news that came out wasn’t about some sort of scandal, human rights abuse, natural disaster, poor handling of that natural disaster — the list could go on.
In a world of bad news and fake news, it’s easy to overlook the good things that have happened. For many, the post-2016 election world has been incredibly bleak. The thing is, the scandals and the debates about free speech get the clicks because they’re the stories that catch people’s eyes and spark outrage. There’s nothing wrong with shedding light on these stories — we encourage that and believe there are important issues that need more media attention. But we also believe that there is a light in all the darkness, and that light tends to get shoved to the back of the newspaper.
We here at the Clog don’t want to trivialize the stories that are hard to read, but we also don’t want the positive stories to be trivialized and pushed out of our memories. We’ve collected some positive and newsworthy stories that have happened since November 8, 2016, because despite all the evil and unhappiness in the world, there are good people and amazing things happening that are worth our attention.
Beyoncé had twins!
How better to start out this list than with Queen B and the gift of life? This last summer, Beyoncé and Jay-Z welcomed twins into their lovely family. Beyoncé is not just an incredible mother but also a strong role model for women everywhere, and she has been using her platform to spread powerful political and personal messages. The music she creates has inspired people around the globe, so how can we not be excited that she’s brought two more powerful human beings into the world?
UC Berkeley is No. 1 again
It’s been a rough year for our dear UC Berkeley. We’ve seen the Milo Yiannopoulos riots, “Free Speech Week” (which we didn’t actually end up seeing), massive protests in the area and the misuse of public funds. It was only fitting that we lost our standing in multiple news outlets on top of everything else. But this sad story has a happy ending. The U.S. News and World Report put us back in our rightful place as the No. 1 public university in the world! It’s nice to know that not everyone thinks poorly of us. Take that, Milo and UCLA!
Malala Yousafzai started university after a long journey of fighting for education for girls
For some context, Malala is a 20-year-old activist for women’s education and the youngest Nobel Laureate. In 2012, she was shot by the Taliban on her way home from school, but she survived and has been raising hell against the institutions and forces that work against education for women ever since. This past fall, five years after she was shot for going to school, she started school at Oxford University, which is a huge deal! We want to congratulate her on this accomplishment and say how inspired we are by all her work. Also, if she ever wants to hang out, you know, college student to college student, she’s got a bunch of fans here at UC Berkeley!
Disney Channel’s first gay story line
It was just recently released that a popular show on Disney Channel, “Andi Mack,” would be getting a gay character and story line. This is big, considering the fact that Disney has a massive audience and a huge hand in shaping the childhoods of young people around the world. This much-needed representation is an exciting prospect for the future of television and Disney itself, and we look forward to seeing where the show goes with this character.
NASA discovers a new solar system with habitable planets
Big leaps for mankind were made in the final frontier this the last year! In February 2017, NASA presented their discovery of “the most Earth-sized planets found in the habitable zone of a single star” and called it TRAPPIST-1. This raises exciting prospects for future space exploration and answering the tricky question of whether there is life in worlds other than our own. Not to mention, space is just really freaking cool, and it’s exciting to think that we may not be the only ones out here. Keep an eye out for exciting news from NASA; they’re always coming out with cool information about the great beyond.
Some great music was released
The end of 2016 and 2017 has been a great time for music so far. From Kendrick Lamar to One Direction’s Harry Styles and Niall Horan releasing new music (although we’d rather see them bring the band back together cause that’d for sure produce #thebestsongever), it’s been a great time for music lovers of all genres. Breakout stars like Khalid, Dua Lipa and SZA have been bringing some new beats for us to enjoy, and old favorites like Lorde, Bruno Mars, Childish Gambino and Kesha have continued to blow us away with new content to jam to on the way to lecture.
Some great movies came out
Music isn’t the only thing that deserves our attention; it’s been a great year for movies as well! “Get Out,” “Dunkirk,” “Logan,” “Moana,” “Hidden Figures,” “La La Land” … the list could go on. We’re no movie buffs, but we’ve had a thoroughly good time on every trip to the theater this last year. Sometimes, when the world gets tough, it’s nice to have movies as an escape from reality, so we’d like to say hats off to all the creators of these great cinematographic experiences.
The GoFundMe Raising $88K for Beto
Right here on our own streets, we saw a sad and all too frequent story of injustice at the hands of the police and someone who couldn’t fight back. Beto is a hot dog street vendor who had his money taken from him by UCPD Officer Sean Aranas on a game day back in early September. This sparked outrage around the nation, and a GoFundMe was created to raise money for Beto. The GoFundMe ended up raising about $88,000 for Beto, which he’s planning on using to start his own food truck. This sad story turned incredibly positive thanks to the support from people who refused to let this injustice pass. In a world that seems to function on the subjugation and exploitation of minorities, the poor and the vulnerable, this news story is an amazing example of how there are people out there who do not stand for the system the world has in place.
There are so many more positive news stories out there than the ones we have listed, and we encourage all of you to keep an eye out for them every day. We want everyone to stay woke but to also not let it bring you down. Only having a negative view of the world makes positive change seem hopeless, and as a result, change won’t happen — the world will only reflect the sadness we see. The kind of world we want exists in the little things, in discoveries of new planets and in communities coming together to support someone who has been marginalized. It’s not everywhere, but it’s there. So stay realistic and educate yourself, but also remember that there’s a lot of good out there — we just need to open up our eyes to see it.
Contact Sunny Sichi at [email protected].