Top News Stories of 2017
Now that the year is nearing a close, many are taking a look in the rearview mirror at the various highs and lows that defined 2017. From the swearing in of a new U.S. president and the biggest comeback in Super Bowl history to the unfathomable tragedy that befell concertgoers in Las Vegas, the past year is one that we will likely remember far into the future.
Using data from the past year, MSN editors reviewed data to identify the top stories for every week based on reader traffic, the number of headlines for each topic, and the significance of ongoing story developments in subsequent weeks. Looking back at these major events of the year is not only a reminder of what occurred over the last 12 months, but of how we can incorporate new earned perspectives on the world into a fresh 2018. Each slide represents the biggest stories of the week, and data was collected through the week of November 19, 2017.
Jan 1: Mass shooting at Fort Lauderdale airport
The new year had barely started when the deadliest shooting at a U.S. airport took place in Florida. Esteban Santiago-Ruiz opened fire in Terminal 2 baggage claim at the Fort Lauderdale–Hollywood International Airport in Florida, killing five people and injuring six. The 26-year-old Iraq veteran had a history of mental health issues, and after pleading not guilty to 22 felony charges linked to the January 6 shooting, was ordered treatment while in custody for his schizophrenia. Then-President Barack Obama told ABC News, “These kinds of tragedies have happened too often during the years that I've been president. The pain, the grief, the shock that they must be going through is enormous."
Jan 8: Golden Globes -- Meryl Streep goes after Trump
The 2017 Golden Globes was in some ways predictable, with the critical darling “La La Land” running away with a record seven awards, including wins for leads Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone. But what the public didn’t expect was a fervent, politically-charged speech from actress Meryl Streep. Upon receiving the Cecil B. DeMille Award for lifetime achievement, Streep didn’t address her career as much as calling out the president-elect Trump for mocking a disabled New York Times reporter in 2015. She went on to make an impassioned statement about the importance of keeping a free press.
Jan 15: Trump sworn in as Obama leaves. And don't forget the inauguration attendance flap
On a rainy January 20 in Washington, D.C., Donald J. Trump was sworn in as the 45th President of the United States. Surprisingly, however, the arguably bigger story was one of attendance: while the president touted an “unbelievable, perhaps record-setting turnout," side-by-side photo comparisons and tallies from the MTA and others found that the inauguration crowd was about a third of the size of the crowd at President Obama’s ceremony in 2009.
Jan 22: Women's March
The day following President Trump’s inauguration, more 50,000 women, men, and children gathered in Washington D.C. — as well as in more than 408 cities across the country (and around the world) — for the Women’s March. It was organized in protest of policies and positions taken by the president during his campaign, especially regarding human rights, women's rights, immigration reform, and freedom of religion. Speakers in D.C. included Gloria Steinem, Janet Mock, and Kamala Harris. Pink “pussyhats” were worn at the marches to reclaim the derogatory term, in response to a statement made by Trump in 2005.
Jan 29: Trump elbows in, attacks Aussie prime minister, female employee's dress, fires asst. AG
Not long after President Trump took his seat in the oval office, word circulated that one of the president’s many calls with world leaders did not go as smoothly as the rest. According to senior U.S. officials, Trump and Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull butted heads when they discussed a deal made under the Obama administration that would allow refugees in Australia to resettle in the U.S — one that Trump did not agree with. “This was the worst call by far,” he allegedly told Turnbull.
During the same week, President Trump sent a directive to female staffers to “dress like women” when at work, and fired acting attorney general Sally Q. Yates for refusing to back his executive order that would prevent refugees and people from largely Muslim countries from entering the U.S.
Feb 5: Patriots win super bowl (Lady Gaga halftime, stolen jersey, Giselle)
In the biggest comeback in Super Bowl history, the New England Patriots turned a 25-point deficit into their fifth title, defeating the Atlanta Falcons 34-28. More records were broken by Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, who became the first quarterback to earn five Super Bowl titles and four Super Bowl MVP awards. Pop sensation Lady Gaga performed the halftime show, backed by a horde of LED-carrying drones that displayed the American flag overhead.
In other news, a Mexican journalist was caught by the F.B.I. for stealing Brady’s Super Bowl LI jersey, as well as another jersey and a Denver Broncos helmet.
Feb 12: Oroville dam collapse
On February 7 the Oroville Dam, a dam on the Feather River near Oroville, California, was damaged and caused the evacuation of more than 180,000 people nearby. The remarkable amount of precipitation that prompted many floods in the state damaged part of the main and emergency spillways of the dam, causing major erosion and threatened the safety of those in the vicinity. Luckily, the crisis was contained and people returned to their homes.
Feb 19: Trump tries to explain away "Last night in Sweden" remark from speech on Feb 18
During a rally on February 18 in Florida, President Trump made a point to criticize countries in Europe that have been welcoming refugees, listing places with open policies and others that have suffered terrorist attacks in recent years. “You look at what’s happening,” he said. “We’ve got to keep our country safe. You look at what’s happening in Germany, you look at what’s happening last night in Sweden. Sweden, who would believe this?” Many Swedes, including government officials, were unsure what the president was referring to, as no attacks of the sort had occurred the night before. Spokespeople for the White House attempted to clarify the statement, saying it was a reference to crime in Sweden in general. President Trump took to Twitter to explain that he had been referring to a Fox News story in which a filmmaker asserted that immigrants were responsible for a crime wave in Sweden.
Feb 26: Oscar best picture flub
In one of the most shocking moments in Academy Awards history, one film’s cast and crew handed their coveted Best Picture Award to another, after a flub from the award’s presenters. Warren Beatty received the wrong envelope from PriceWaterhouseCoopers accountant Brian Cullinan and announced that “La La Land” had won the Oscar for Best Picture. As the team cheered and rushed onto the stage, producer Jordan Horowitz saw the correct card, realized the error that had been made, and announced that “Moonlight” had won instead.
Mar 5: Trump-Obama wiretap spat
In a series of tweets President Trump asserted that former President Obama had tapped his phones and kept him under surveillance during the 2016 presidential campaign. Though these claims were unsubstantiated, the president continued to assert their validity throughout the year. Former FBI director James Comey told the White House Intelligence Committee, “With respect to the president's tweets about alleged wiretapping directed at him by the prior administration, I have no information that supports those tweets, and we have looked carefully inside the FBI.”2018 All rights reserved.