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2012’s Naughty and Nice List: Kristen Stewart, Todd Akin, & More

As the year nears its end, here’s a look back at some of our favorite naughty and nice people of the year. (You better not cry…)

Naughty & Nice 2012

OK, so 2012 was a pretty naughty year. With top-secret affairs to sophisticated doping rings, more than a few Americans may find coal where their presents should be. But there were nice moments too: dog-saving and boot-gifting galore. As the year nears its end, here's a look back at some of our favorite naughty and nice people of the year. (You better not cry ... )

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Naughty: Todd Akin

It was a legitimately naughty year for Todd Akin. First, he said that in the case of “legitimate rape,” pregnancy hardly happens. That gem right there, though a widely accepted theory on the far right, made the GOP establishment back away from the Senate hopeful. If that wasn’t enough, Akin then compared his opponent, incumbent Sen. Claire McCaskill, to a dog. Then he lost the election. If there is a bright side to Akin’s year, it’s that he says he may write a book now. He does have the name recognition thing going for him.

Emmanuel Dunand/AFP, via Getty

Nice: The Fierce Five

Fierce, they undoubtedly were. But somehow, in the midst of triumphant victory at the 2012 London Olympic games, the American women's gymnastics team was nice, too—in a sport known for the opposite. From Jordyn Wieber selflessly cheering her teammates after being denied a spot in the individuals to the group coming together to sport Gabby Douglas–inspired hair when America criticized it, they reminded the nation what a true team looks like. But an extra-nice thanks goes out to McKayla Maroney, for being impressed with her not-impressed meme and embracing it like it was nobody's business.

Gregorio Borgia/AP

Naughty: Costa Concordia Captain Francesco Schettino

For captains, abandoning ship is pretty much the worst thing you can do. So when the luxury cruise liner Costa Concordia hit a reef off the coast of the Italian coast and began sinking in January of 2012, Captain Francesco Schettino did the only he shouldn't have: he ran. In the aftermath of the tragic incident—which left more than 30 dead—the 4,200 passengers who managed to make it to safety angrily reported the captain's negligence. Schettino was arrested along with eight others and slapped with multiple charges, one of which included manslaughter.

Christopher Polk/Getty

Naughty: M.I.A.

To be fair, no one ever said she was nice. Known for her subversive, inflammatory performances, English recording artist Maya Arulpragasam, who goes by the stage name M.I.A., shocked everyone (and yet, no one) when she flipped America the bird right in the middle of NBC's live Super Bowl XLVI halftime show. Madonna, for one, was "not pleased," calling the stunt—which fell smack dab in the middle of her own set—a "teenager" thing to do. Against the wishes of some of her fans, M.I.A. issued a formal apology. Read: sorry not sorry.

Saul Loeb/AFP, via Getty

Nice: Scott Van Duzer

There's something about a genuine, innocent hug. In September of 2012, the owner of Fort Pierce, Florida's Big Apple Pizza and Pasta Italian Restaurant, Scott Van Duzer, saw a weary president in need of just that, and so he grabbed the 6'2" POTUS and hugged the heck out of him. In the dead heat of a divise and incendiary campaign season, Van Duzer—a registered Republican—became a beacon of bipartisan light. On his second day of a two-day bus tour across the swing state, Obama undoubtedly left the joint a little happier (if not slightly jarred).

Krista Kennell/AFP, via Getty

Naughty: Kristen Stewart

Poor, poor Bella Swan. Kristen Stewart, known for Twilight and her unflinching apathy, clinched a spot on the naughty list by doing the unthinkable—cheating on costar Robert Pattinson. News of her tryst with married 42-year-old Snow White and the Huntsman director Rupert Sanders spread quickly—including pictures of her making out with him in a car. Stewart, who likes having her armpits licked, apologized profusely for her transgressions. And it appears to have paid off—Stewart is reportedly back with her fanged beau. And they lived happily ever after?

Mark J. Terrill/AP

Nice: Chad le Clos

When you beat the greatest swimmer of all time at his stroke, in his final Olympics, you've pretty much earned yourself the greatest bragging rights of all time. You could jump around and scream, make the hero feel that he's fallen, or you can do what South African swimmer Chad le Clos did after beating Michael Phelps in the 200m butterfly: nothing. Smiling, with tears in his eyes, le Clos climbed to the top of the podium above Phelps (a place few have been) and humbly accepted the gold—but not without first reminding Phelps that it was him for whom he swam. It take a strong athlete to win, but an even stronger one to do it gracefully. For that, Chad le Clos makes the nice list.

Los Angeles County Sheriff's Office, via Getty Images

Naughty: Amanda Bynes

Retired starlet Amanda Bynes appeared to be prepping for a turn in politics or NASCAR this year. After being pulled over for a DUI in June, Bynes called out to President Obama for help...on Twitter: “I don’t drink. Please fire the cop who arrested me. I also don’t hit and run. The end,” she tweeted. Bynes was later nabbed for a hit-and-run and was caught smoking what looked like pot while driving. Aside from earning a spot on GQ’s “Least Influential” list, Bynes didn’t just make automotive news in ’12. She said she thought she deserved Lindsay Lohan’s breakout roles. Who was naughtier this year? It’s unclear.

New York City Police Department

Nice: Lawrence DiPrimo

The picture, now ubiquitous, is human nature at its finest. True, when word spread that the man who received a $75 pair of boots from New York City Police Officer Lawrence DiPrimo was not actually homeless, the heartwarming story took a messy turn. But whether or not Jeffrey Hillman is homeless or not changes nothing about what NYPD Officer Lawrence DiPrimo did. A true act of kindness can never be tainted.

Karen Bleier/AFP, via Getty

Naughty: Gen. David Petraeus

It's hard to imagine a decorated general and former director of the CIA making the naughty list, but this year, even General David Petraeus himself would admit it's where he belongs. An extra-marital affair with his biographer, another mysterious woman in the picture, then a shirtless general—and suddenly we've got one of the naughtiest scenes in central intelligence history. Top secret, mmk.

Mel Evans/AP

Nice: Mayor Cory Booker

Newark Mayor Cory Booker is no stranger to heroism. But the car-shoveling, diaper-delivering superman outdid even his own greatest deeds this April. When Booker spotted flames and smoke coming from the second floor of a neighbor's building, he didn't hesitate before running in with his security team. Under the impression that they had taken everyone to safety, Booker says he heard a woman inside cry for help and ran back into the inferno—risking his own life— to save her. He suffered burns on one hand but was otherwise unharmed. You don't get a #coreybookerstories hastag for nothing.

Charley Gallay/Getty for A&E Networks

Naughty: Lindsay Lohan

A seasoned veteran of the naughty list, there are few ways to misbehave that Lilo hasn't tried. This November, she pulled off the unthinkable: she was charged with four separate crimes in two states on one day. But her 2012 rap sheet was so much more. She crashed cars, hit a guy with a car, punched a palm reader, and got into murky waters with the IRS. And remember Liz and Dick? Yikes. Read more about Lindsay’s tumultuous 2012 here. Here’s hoping to a return to the Lohan of Mean Girls in ’13.



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Naughty: Chris Brown & Rihanna

Call them naughty, call them nice, or just call them, maybe? This year, Rihanna took a few walks on the naughty side. First posting suggestive pictures with ex-beau and rude boy himself Chris Brown, then ignoring the 250 journalists and contest winners she carted with her on the her world tour. But a year wouldn't be complete with a little naughtiness from Breezy himself. When comedian Jenny Johnson sent a snarky response to one of his tweets, he unleashed a vile, misogynistic Twitter tirade against her. No really, don't wake him up.

Mike Ullery/Piqua Daily Call via AP

Nice: Meghan Vogel

Ohio track star Meghan Vogel was riding high after winning her event, the 1600 meter, at a meet in June. But it was her next race that won her the most acclaim. Vogel was exhausted from her earlier sprint, so she was bringing up the rear in the 3200 when a rival runner began to falter. Rather than zipping past the competition to avoid a last-place finish, Vogel stopped and lent a hand, walking Arden McMath to the finish line—and letting McMath cross it first. The crowd gave the pair a standing ovation, and we teared up a little just reading about it.

Tom Pennington/Getty

Naughty: Lance Armstrong

The most celebrated cyclist of all time took a heartbreaking fall from grace in 2012. When the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency filed charges against Armstrong in June of 2012, fans initially thought it the work of jealous cyclists. But as more details emerged, allegedly placing Armstrong at the center of "the most sophisticated, professionalized and successful doping program that sport has ever seen," it was clear that this one wasn't going away. In October, USADA officials stripped him of all seven of his Tour de France titles and delivered a lifetime ban against competing in Olympic sports.

Craig Ruttle/AP

Nice: Occupy Sandy

Hurricane Sandy hit the East Coast harder than anyone had imagined. When Michael Premo—an Occupier whose relief efforts date back to Hurricane Katrina—heard that there were people in Brooklyn his neighborhood and the nearby Rockaways missing basic essentials, he jumped. Posting a note on “Inner Occupy,” an online forum for those involved in the 99-percent movement, he and three others quickly galvanized a force of hundreds, soon to be known as Occupy Sandy. Creating "hubs" where to collect clothes, provide warm meals, and for some, shelter, Occupy Sandy changed the face of relief efforts. As of December 21, the movement had raised close to a million dollars for New York alone.

Hugo Philpott/UPI, via Landov

Naughty: Prince Harry

It's the nicest bit of naughty on the list. After an enjoyable weekend jaunt in Las Vegas, the world got a sneak peek of just exactly what went on inside Prince Harry's VIP suite. The nude images, printed in the August 24th editon of The Sun, were enough to send Buckingham Palace into a shame spiral that they wouldn't bounce back from until—thank god—his sister-in-law got pregnant! Maybe the royal family finally got their answer to the ongoing question: How do you solve a problem like Harry?

Newspix/Rex

Nice: Raden Soemawinata

In August, as 20-year-old Raden Soemawinata strolled down the Brighton pier in Melbourne, Australia, he spotted a woman screaming hysterically and pointing at the water. With no questions or reservations, Soemawinata sprang into action. After stripping down to his boxers, he jumped off the pier and paddled out to rescue Bibi the petite Maltese Terrier who had been blown off the landing only moments earlier. Sue Drummond, the tiny pup's owner, was speechless with gratitude. But Soemawinata chalked it up to the right thing to do. "It was pretty cold and windy but it wasn't such a hard decision to jump in. It wasn't such a great feat," he said after the rescue.

 

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Naughty: The National Rifle Association

In the wake of December's shooting in Newtown, which left 27 victims dead, the National Rifle Association was persona non grata. But in a rare public news conference on Friday, Dec. 21, the organization took the situation from bad to worse. Suggesting that the only solution to incidents like Newtown is to arm our schools with guns, the organization's spokesman not only ignored obvious complications (Columbine had two armed guards), but appeared to earn a fresh new ire while the Connecticut town was still burying its lost children. When you can't even get the body count correct, you've lost before you've begun.