2020 has been a painfully long, wildly unpredictable year, and many Americans are understandably grateful to see it go — including former POTUS Barack Obama. Although 2021 certainly won't mark the end of humanity's collective suffering under the novel coronavirus pandemic, it does signal a new chapter in America's journey to overcoming it. Barack Obama's New Year's tweet kicked off 2021 with an optimistic message about fresh starts, and it's an incredible reminder of how strong the American people can be in the face of adversity.
"After a year that has tested us in unimaginable ways, we've seen how people from all walks of life have stepped up to create change to make things better," Obama wrote in his Jan. 1 New Year's message. "Here's to ringing in 2021 with optimism for what's to come and a belief that our best days are still ahead. Happy New Year!" he added.
Since the onset of the pandemic March, Obama has been vocal about urging Congress and President Donald Trump to take action for struggling Americans. In a Dec. 22 tweet, he called attention to the thousands of people across the country facing eviction. "It’s unconscionable that there are families worried over the holidays that they’ll be evicted next month," he wrote. "Extending the eviction moratorium was a start, but Congress has to do more to help folks who can’t pay rent because of COVID-related unemployment," he added.
Even as 2020 comes to a close amid New Year's celebrations, millions of people across the nation are still straining under the emotional, physical, and economic burden of the pandemic. As of Jan. 1, nearly 350,000 people have died from the coronavirus, and over 20 million cases have been reported, per the New York Times. Even in the face of such immeasurable hardship and loss, people all over the world are still ringing in the New Year with joy. As for his New Year's message to the American people, Obama shared his positive outlook for a brighter future in 2021. Hopefully by the end of next year, everyone's holiday celebrations will look little more festive and a lot less stressful.
There's no doubt the U.S. is going to have to face a number of difficult challenges in 2021, but it's clear Obama knows how to keep a positive attitude in the face of overwhelming obstacles — and honestly, everyone could use a bit of that optimism right now.