We all know 2017 was a 12-month journey through vestibule of hell, and not even Barack Obama is going to convince anyone otherwise. But before it’s over, I’ll take a minute to appreciate that he spent all of 2017 pushing that boulder up the hill. Every time something shitty happened, there he was to supply an image of humanity. Remember the photo of a multi-racial group of children he tweeted after Charlottesville? Remember when he showed up at a high school because children are the future? And now he’s tweeting nice things civilians did with the line “That’s a story from 2017.” It’s as though we didn’t just live through a year of natural disasters and trampled-on wildlife refuges, unwinding greenhouse gas regulations, Sunday morning apocalypse scares via Twitter, over 1,000 deaths in Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands, Donald Trump’s face, Donald Trump Jr.’s face, Steve Bannon’s face, the loss of Princess Leia...cats probably died, too.
Former Official White House photographer Pete Souza, on the other hand, spent all year negging Trump with inspirational Obama images, and it was delightful. Here’s a review:
March 12th, 2017: Kellyanne Conway suggests that the Obama Administration may have used microwaves to surveil Trump Tower.
March 24, 2017: the Affordable Care Act repeal fails.
May 22nd, 2017: the hand swat.
May 24th, 2017: Donald Trump meets the Pope, and everybody looks miserable.
May 31st, 2017: Covfefe
June 29th, 2017: Trump tweets that Mika Brzezinski (“Crazy Mika”) was “bleeding badly from a face-lift” during a visit to Mar-a-Largo.
July 24th, 2017: Trump delivers an expletive-laced speech to the Boy Scouts including brags about crowd size.
July 25th, 2017: Trump publicly belittles Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Twitter.
September 23rd, 2017: Trump disinvites Steph Curry to the White House after Curry says he doesn’t want to go.
October 16, 2017: Trump claims Obama didn’t call the families of fallen soldiers.
November 24th, 2017: Trump tweets he took a “pass” on a Time “Man of the Year,” which Time denies.
And so many more. Here’s to the unofficial presidential photographer of 2017.