What a weird, scary, anxious, powerful…complicated year.
This time last year, I had big plans – I planned on spending some time on the road to cover the 2020 election, and when I wasn’t traveling, planned on continuing my regular coverage of politics and activism in Chicago.
I don’t think any of us were prepared for a global pandemic during an already slow burning but building apocalypse. I certainly wasn’t. The early weeks of the COVID-19 pandemic were the spark that lit the woodpile of anxiety I’d been collecting about the state of the world for the past few years, and by late spring there was a blanket of dread over the world that felt like smoke collecting under the ceiling.
Living through ascendant fascism during late stage capitalism has already been enough to deal with, but throwing a global pandemic on top of that pyre exposed the sheer size of the smoldering warehouse sized tinderbox we live in.
Despite the new struggles on top of the ones we’ve already collectively been wrestling through, 2020 brought moments of joy and happiness, but the moments of anxiety, of pain, of grief, are an indelible mark. A mark I personally have to continue to process and one I suspect we’ll collectively continue to process for an indeterminate and lengthy amount of time.
I’ve still got a lot to reflect on from the past year, and a lot more to do do in the coming one. I wasn’t able to capture as much of 2020 as I’d have liked, but I’m grateful for what I was able to. This collection is some of that.