What a year. A global pandemic, an overactive hurricane season, nationwide protests over racial injustice and a contentious presidential election have dominated the news this year.
No wonder Time magazine has dubbed 2020 “The Worst Year Ever.”
The cover of the weekly news magazine shows 2020 with a big red “X” crossed over it, only the fifth time it has used that symbol.
“It is the latest in a long tradition saved for some of the worst foes humanity has faced in the magazine’s history,” the editors of Time wrote.
Time has used the red “X” four other times. The first came in 1945, marking the death of Adolf Hitler. Later that year, a black “X” was placed over Japan’s rising sun, signifying the end of World War II in the Pacific theater.
The next time a red “X” was used was 2003, when Time crossed out Saddam Hussein at the beginning of the Iraq war. The third “X” occurred three years later, when U.S. forces killed Abu Mousab al-Zarqawi, the leader of al-Qaeda in Iraq. The most recent use the red “X” came in 2011 when Osama bin Laden was killed.
The lead article delves into the coronavirus pandemic, the nationwide protests in the wake of the death of George Floyd and others, and the nation’s economic turndown. The magazine also mentions the deaths of notable figures such as Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, former Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant and actor Chadwick Boseman.
“There have been worse years in U.S. history, and certainly worse years in world history, but most of us alive today have seen nothing like this one,” Time wrote. “You would need to be over 100 to remember the devastation of World War I and the 1918 flu pandemic; roughly 90 to have a sense of the economic deprivation wrought by the Great Depression; and in your 80s to retain any memory of World War II and its horrors.
“The rest of us have had no training wheels for this.”