2012 Year in Review

By Ling-Mei Wong


The Year of the Dragon went out with a bang. U.S. President Barack Obama was reelected. The state’s economy returned to pre-recession levels. And Boston’s Celtics came within a hair of winning the NBA championship.

However, 2012 had its share of tragedy as well. The world reeled from the senseless slaughter at Sandy Hook in December, along with a shooting at a Colorado movie theater. Gun control was a rallying cry in 2012.

As we welcome the Year of the Snake, we look back at 2012.


The Mass. Senate voted to end mismanagement and financial abuses at state education partnerships, which help special-needs children. It passed legislation establishing strict oversight and accountability of the state’s 30 institutions.

The Lunar New Year ushers in the Year of the Dragon.


The Massachusetts Bay Transport Authority proposes increased fare prices and cuts to many services for public transportation.

Kam Man Supermarket opens a new store at South Bay Center in Dorchester.


Hong Kong’s Secretary for Financial Services K.C. Chan speaks on Boston’s role in the Chinese economy at the Harvard Club.

“Wild Swans,” based on Jung Chang’s memoir, plays at the American Repertory Theater.


Tufts Medical Center and Floating Hospital for Children goes tobacco-free. Smoking and all other forms of tobacco use are prohibited inside and within 25 feet of all Tufts Medical Center buildings.

Two gunmen shoot five people in Tulsa, Okla., killing two. The suspects Jacob England, 19, and Alvin Watts, 32, were white and the crime took place in a predominantly black neighborhood.


The Consul General of Japan presents Boston Mayor Thomas Menino with cherry trees as part of the Greater Boston-Japan Cherry Blossom Festival.

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg plans to ban soft drinks larger than 16 ounces. The legislation is passed in September.


The Supreme Court rules 5 to 4 the Affordable Care Act is constitutional.

The Boston Celtics make it to the NBA eastern conference finals, facing off against the Miami Heat in seven games. Miami wins four out of the seven matches and goes on to beat the Oklahoma City Thunder in the NBA Finals.


The Chinatown Coalition presents findings on population growth of 30 percent — nearly all Caucasians at 90 percent — from 2000 to 2010 in the area, based on census data. Health concerns include cancer, with lung cancer being the greatest concern.

Gunman James Eagan Holmes opens fire on an Aurora, Colo., movie theater during a midnight screening of “The Dark Knight Rises.” Casualties include 12 people and 58 injured.


The 2012 Olympic Games take place in London, making it the only city to host the games three times. Another first is female competitors in every sport.

Chinatown celebrates August Moon Festival with lion dances along Harrison, Hudson, Tyler and Beach Streets.


The U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, is attacked Sept. 11.

Mayor Menino vetoes the second redistricting map submitted by the city council.


Hurricane Sandy devastates the Northeast coast. The greater Boston area escapes relatively unscathed.

Tufts Medical Center plans to serve more patients and expand its reach through a partnership with Vanguard Health Systems.


President Barack Obama is reelected, beating Republican candidate Gov. Mitt Romney. Voters named Elizabeth Warren to be their next senator of Massachusetts. In the state senate, Anthony Petruccelli was reelected to represent the First Suffolk and Middlesex district, which includes Chinatown since 2011.

Xi Jinping is elected Paramount Leader of China and is expected to become president in March 2013 at the National People’s Congress.


The new South Cove Manor Nursing Home site breaks ground in Quincy. Its original location at 120 Shawmut Avenue was up for sale, as there were few options in Chinatown for further expansion.

On Dec. 14, 20-year-old Adam Lanza shoots 20 children, six adults and himself in Newtown, Conn. The massacre triggers debate about gun control.

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This post is also available in: Chinese

About Ling-Mei Wong 黃靈美

Editor of the Sampan, the only bilingual Chinese-English newspaper in New England 舢舨報紙總編輯。舢舨是全紐英倫唯一的中英雙語雙週報。
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