10 Huge News Stories That Defined 2012 (PHOTOS)

Jennifer Lawinski | Dec 22, 2012 Breaking

news storiesIt was the best of times, it was the worst of times. This year saw some glorious highs, like the camaraderie and triumph of 2012 London Olympics, and some tragic, heartbreaking lows, like the Sandy Hook Elementary school massacre and Hurricane Sandy's devastation in New York and New Jersey.

We saw acts of kindness, and startling acts of rage and violence. And we reelected the nation's first African American president to his second term. Here are some of the news highlights from 2012. What else would you put on the list?

Image via Charlie Anzman/Flickr

  • Sandy Hook Elementary School Shooting

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    Image via RobBixbyPhotography/Flickr

    On Dec. 14, Adam Lanza stormed the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., killing six teachers and 20 first graders. He then shot himself. Before the rampage, Lanza shot his mother, Nancy Lanza, while she slept in their home. The shooting was a heartbreaking tragedy and has sparked a national debate about gun control.

  • Colorado Theater Shooting

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    Image via Arapahoe County Sheriff's Office

    On Friday, July 20, alleged gunman James Holmes stormed a midnight snowing of The Dark Night Rises in Aurora, Colo., killing 12 people and injuring 58 others. It was a terrifying tragedy that was allegedly carefully planned. Holmes has tried to commit suicide in prison.

  • Hurricane Sandy

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    Image via WarmSleepy/Flickr

    Hurricane Sandy slammed into the Jersey Shore on Oct. 29, devastating shore communities in New Jersey and New York City. It flooded parts of Manhattan and left residents in some areas without power for weeks, ultimately causing $63 billion in damage.

  • Trayvon Martin Shooting

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    Image via LaDawna/Flickr

    Seventeen-year-old Trayvon Martin was walking home from 7-Eleven when he was allegedly shot and killed by neighborhood watchman George Zimmerman. Zimmerman claims the teen attacked him, but many vilified him as racist. National protests erupted where many wore hoodies, like Martin wore when he was killed.

  • 2012 Olympics

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    Image via Charlie Anzman/Flickr

    The 2012 London Olympics saw the triumph of the U.S. Women's Gymnastics team, the end of the era of Michael Phelps and countless other moments of triumph and disappointment. And we loved every minute of it.

     

  • The 47%

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    Image via cletch/Flickr

    When GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney was secretly filmed at a fundraiser bashing the "47%" of Americans who don't pay income taxes as a bunch of freeloaders, he insulted kids, the poor and stay-at-home moms. The nation responded by not electing him president.

  • The Murders of the Krim Children

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    Image via Alan Cleaver/Flickr

    It was a parent's worst nightmare. Marina Krim came home to find her 6-year-old daughter and 2-year-old son slain in the tub, and then nanny Yoselyn Ortega slashed her own throat. Ortega is charged with their murder, and the Krim family is left devastated. Our hearts go out to them.

  • The Tale of the Bullied Bus Monitor

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    Image via bsabarnowl/Flickr

    We know kids can be cruel sometimes, but when a group of middle-school bullies brought a 72-year-old bus monitor to tears with their taunts, the world decided to respond with kindness. An online campaign raised more than $750,000 for Karen Klein.

  • Binders Full of Women

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    Image via FeatheredTar/Flickr

    When GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney told the world he'd looked through "binders full of women" to help staff the cabinet when he was the governor of Massachusetts, he effectively ensured that women would have trouble taking him, and his stance on women in the workplace, very seriously at all. Thanks, Mitt.

  • "Legitimate" Rape

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    Image via aiken.house.gov

    Missouri Congressman Todd Aiken found himself in hot water last August when he said that in the case of a "legitimate rape" a woman's body would "shut itself down" and prevent pregnancy. Yeah. That happens. He was voted out of office after that doozy.

crime election guns hurricane sandy mitt romney olympics politics weather year in review

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