Editorial, Opinion

The FreeP wraps 2022 | EDITORIAL

It seems like every year we enter a new round of unprecedented times — war, disease, natural disaster — a slurry of supposed chaos touted as Gen Z’s next opportunity to live through a historical event. It’s rewarding to just call the world crazy and brandish the bad as some trophy to celebrate surviving another trip around the sun.

In truth, 2022 was as indescribable as any other, containing the good, the bad and the in between, with these times as precedented as they’ve ever been. Chaos is routine. 

With that in mind The Daily Free Press Editorial Board has picked out some moments that distinguish these 365 days from the 1.658 trillion which preceded it. 

Haley Alvarez-Lauto & Chloe Patel | Senior Graphic Artists

Ukraine war

The year kicked off with a horrifying bang when Russia invaded Ukraine on Feb. 24. The war, which Russia still insists on referring to as an ongoing military campaign, was launched to prevent Ukraine from joining NATO. 

Russia hopes to absorb Ukraine, re-stitching the long seceded country into the Soviet quilt of Vladimir Putin’s dreams. 

Since the invasion, tens of thousands have died and millions have been displaced. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky was recently named TIME’s 2022 Person Of The Year for his salient efforts to defend the country. 

Will Smith slapped Chris Rock at the Oscars

If you are asking “That was this year?!” Yes, it was in March. We forgot too. 

The terrible T

Summer in Boston is never for the faint of heart but this year, overwhelming humidity and high temps were exasperated by constant problems with the T. 

Walking across the city is a nuisance in general, adding 90 degree weather forces even summer stans to ache for the blistering cold of Boston winters. 

The entire Orange Line was shut down between Aug. 19 to Sept. 18, and a portion of the Green Line was shut down from Aug. 22 to Sept. 18. 

The T also bore witness to several life-threatening and fatal incidents. In one specific case, commuter Robinson Laslin died when his arm got stuck in the doorway of a Red Line train. 

The COVID-19 Horizon

Though it seems we’ll never truly be rid of COVID, returning to Boston University in September definitely felt like an abandonment of the dreaded “new normal” everyone grew used to over the past two years. 

Finally it was just, normal normal. 

Mask mandates at the University ended on May 13, as well as required testing. While many celebrated this return to pre-COVID etiquette, the move was also criticized for putting high risk individuals in jeopardy as the change loosened the reins which had kept cases down for the past two years. 

Labor Rights

Like the Billboard Music second best song of the year, “Break My Soul” by Beyonce, 2022 sang the scolding criticisms of capitalism. 

According to data from Bloomberg Law, the first half of 2022 saw unions win 641 elections, the most in nearly 20 years. 

BU’s campus was no stranger to these trends in labor rights. The Starbucks at 874 Commonwealth Ave. was on strike for 64 days, the longest documented strike in the company’s history. 

BU Graduate Workers also launched their campaign for unionization this past September. Their union election was held earlier this past week from Dec. 5 to 7, with 1,414 in support of the union and 28 against.  

Northeastern Mail Bombing

On Sept. 13 a Northeastern University employee placed a call to 911 claiming a pelican case expelled sharp objects when opened, sending shrapnel into his arm and him to the hospital.

The alleged bombing shocked students across Boston and the nation with the threat of this incident’s potential wide reaching effects. 

However, after further investigation, the hurt party who made the original call was revealed to have placed the “bomb,” which wasn’t exactly a bomb, himself, seemingly in an attempt to the get the University’s virtual reality lab shutdown. 

Itaewon Halloween Crowd Crush

On Oct. 29, a crowd crush occurred in the Itaewon neighborhood of Seoul, Korea due to overcrowding. 149 people were killed and 150 injured, many of which were teenagers and people in their early 20s participating in the Halloween festivities. 


Crude commentary from Kanye West, who legally changed his name to Ye, isn’t a feature unique to 2022 considering the rapper’s long history of speaking his mind no matter how problematic the thought. 

However, West’s antisemetic string of remarks throughout the fall were a departure from his usual explosive language. Balenciaga and Adidas felt it impossible to stick around for his ruined reputation era, dropping the artist from their respective collaborations. 

Even Elon Musk, known proponent of freeing the tongue on his newly acquired platform Twitter, chose to boot West from the app when he posted a swastika. 

Maura Healey

On a more positive note of people who made this year unforgettable, Maura Healey made history this past November when she was elected the Governor of Massachusetts. Healey is the first woman and openly gay person to the hold the office. 

Qatar World Cup

The 2022 FIFA World Cup will be held in Qatar from Nov. 20 to Dec. 18, to the dismay of much of the world. Earlier this year it was revealed Qatar’s winning bid to host the cup was in fact a result of bribing FIFA administration. 

To make matters worse the path to the cup was one riddled with labor violations. The country was condemned by activists across the globe for exploiting migrant workers to build seven new stadiums for the event. 

Movies of the year 

In the words of Harry Styles, my favorite thing about these movies is, like, they feel like movies. Our favorites of the year include the absurdist philosophy and googly eyed fun of “Everything Everywhere All At Once,” emo Bruce Wayne in “The Batman” and “Don’t Worry Darling” for having a press tour more interesting than its plot.

This editorial was written by Opinion Editor Lydia Evans.


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