Of Interest

Looking Back: 2000-2010


Michigan Bar Journal


As part of our continuing celebration of the Michigan Bar Journal’s centennial featuring a decade-by-decade look back at the past 100 years, the focus this month turns to the first decade of the new millennium. Trying to wrap a tidy bow around the events that occurred between 2000 and 2009 is an exercise in futility.

The lows — the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on New York and Washington D.C.; Hurricane Katrina’s destruction of New Orleans and the Gulf Coast in 2005; and a crippling economic crisis toward the end of the decade that devastated the finances of corporations and consumers alike — were abysmal.

On the other hand, the highs were pretty remarkable. Not everyone voted for Democrat Barack Obama in the 2008 presidential election, but as the first Black to be elected to the country’s highest office, the visuals surrounding his election night victory speech in Chicago’s Grant Park and his inauguration in the nation’s capital the following January are hard to forget.

Six years prior to Obama’s win, Michigan made history when voters chose Democrat Jennifer Granholm as governor, the first female to hold the seat. In the state’s five gubernatorial elections starting with 2002, women have been victorious in three of them and a female is guaranteed to win the seat again in 2022.

Perhaps the biggest catalyst of change in the decade — we’ll let you decide whether it was a positive or negative — was the rapid growth in personal technology. The mobile flip phones we all had at the start of the decade were obsolete a few years later after Apple introduced the iPhone, a revolutionary product that coincided with a massive upheaval in how we communicated with one another and the world with the launch of social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

Join us next month when we conclude our celebration of the Michigan Bar Journal’s 100th anniversary.