Politics, protests, Pokemon Go dominate 2016 headlines

2016’s most memorable national news headlines ranged from presidential politics, to passionate, sometimes violent protests to the deaths of celebrities, along with mass shootings, deadly hurricanes, fires and Pokemon Go.

The year of 2016 may be remembered for countless protests. People were drawn into the streets to protest Donald Trump as President-elect, anti-transgender legislation in North Carolina, the Dakota Access pipeline, officer-involved shooting deaths taken on by Blacks Lives Matter.

Presidental politics dominated the headlines when Hillary Clinton took on billionaire political outsider, Donald Trump. In the end, the businessman defeated Clinton, but now US intelligence agencies believe President-elect Trump may have had help from Russia.

Donald Trump’s 2016 win led to a series of protests in numerous cities, but this wasn’t the only cause that drew people out to voice their opinions. People also took the streets after the passage of House Bill 2 in North Carolina, which prevented transgender people from using the public bathroom of the gender with which they identify. Ultimately, the Justice Department sued the state, saying the bill violates parts of the Civil Rights Act.

In North Dakota, Native Americans, politicians, celebrities and veterans stood and camped together to challenge the building of the Dakota Access Pipeline. The protests, which lasted for months, was the largest gathering of Native Americans in the past 100 years.

The Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement organized demonstrations after the officer-involved shooting deaths of Keith Lamont Scott, Terrence Crutcher, Paul O’Neal, Alton Sterling and Philando Castile. Castile’s death was live-streamed on Facebook by his wife.

In July during a peaceful BLM protest in Dallas, a military veteran ambushed a group of police officers. He killed 5 and injured 9 others. The attack was deadliest for law enforcement since 9/11.

Deadly mass shootings weren’t so uncommon in 2016. One of the most memorable mass shootings involved a security guard who opened fire at Pulse, the popular gay nightclub in Orlando. The shooting killed 49 people and injured 53 others.

Natural disasters also claimed more than a few lives. Hurricane Matthew killed 49 people in the United States, and more than 1,000 in the Carribean. In Tennesse, dry conditions fueled two wildfires which killed 14 people and charred 2,500 buildings.

Meanwhile,  in Oakland, 36 people died during a party when a fire torched a warehouse known as The Ghost Ship, a building where artists lived.

Speaking of fires, Samsung was forced to recall and discontinue its popular smartphone, the Galaxy Note 7 when the phones began blowing up in customers’ hands.

In celebrity news, the death of Prince shocked and saddened fans around the world. The 7 time Grammy award winning artist died at 57.

The popular smartphone game, Pokemon Go, provided a potentially much-needed distraction. People across the globe were glued to their phones while playing the game.