11 tweets show why Simone Biles and Simone Manuel's Olympic wins are so important.

Get ready for every baby girl born in the latter half of 2016 to be named Simone.

Considering the incredible performances of not one but two Olympians named Simone, it's looking like the name itself may forever be equated with success.

Simone Biles (left) and Simone Manuel (right) kicking ass respectively. Photos by Alex Livesey/Getty Images and Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images.


After her incredible run of gold medals in Rio, it's no surprise that Simone Biles is being called the world's best gymnast.

Not only is she one of the most medaled gymnasts in history, her performance on Aug. 11, 2016, earned her a gold medal in individual all-around competition with what ESPN noted was the largest margin seen since 2006.

Simone Biles soaring high. Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images.

As female athletes have been compared to their male peers over and over again throughout the Rio Olympics (and many others), Biles decided to put a stop to it with one powerful phrase:

"I'm not the next Usain Bolt or Michael Phelps. I'm the first Simone Biles."

Just making sure it's real. Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images.

She's not the only Simone making waves at the Olympics. Team USA swimmer Simone Manuel is literally making waves, by shattering glass ceilings (figuratively) in the pool.

On Aug. 11, Simone Manuel became the first black female swimmer ever to take the gold in an individual event, when she tied with Penny Oleksiak in the 100-meter freestyle.

While that's meaningful in its own right, Manuel took it one giant step further by noting what her win means in the context of the increased awareness around incidents of police brutality and discrimination that black people have faced, especially in the past few years.

"Coming into the race I tried to take weight of the black community off my shoulders. It’s something I carry with me. I want to be an inspiration, but I would like there to be a day when it is not 'Simone the black swimmer,'" she told USA Today.

Manuel receiving her gold medal. Photo by Adam Pretty/Getty Images.

It's not surprising the world has fallen in love with these two women named Simone. Even more inspiring is that they're paving the way for black young women everywhere who aspire to one day be competitive athletes.  

Here are 11 people who have been totally and personally inspired by the history-making achievements of Simone Biles and Simone Manuel:

1. This person who saw three girls who found a new role model in Simone Biles.

2. This person who wants us to appreciate that breaking barriers is what the Olympics is all about.

3. This person who noted that Simone Manuel's victory is historical in more ways than one.

4. This person who has just realized that God is a woman. And an athlete.

5. This person who recognized the pure poetry of Simone Biles and Simone Manuel's achievements.

6. This person who set the bar low for herself but was still totally inspired.

7. This person who pointed out how very real #BlackGirlMagic is.

8. This person who walks taller, because Simone Biles.

9. This aunt who has a lot of swim meets in her future.

10. This person who honored Simone Manuel with an amazing illustration.

11. This person who remembered Dorothy Dandridge's conflict with pools.

12. And this person who knows the haters are just gonna have to deal with it.

Simone Biles and Simone Manuel are the future of the Olympics and are making people across the country proud to be themselves and proud to be Americans.

At the rate these talented ladies are going, it might soon be time to rename the gold medal "The Simone." Just a suggestion.

Images courtesy of John Scully, Walden University, Ingrid Scully
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Since March of 2020, over 29 million Americans have been diagnosed with COVID-19, according to the CDC. Over 540,000 have died in the United States as this unprecedented pandemic has swept the globe. And yet, by the end of 2020, it looked like science was winning: vaccines had been developed.

In celebration of the power of science we spoke to three people: an individual, a medical provider, and a vaccine scientist about how vaccines have impacted them throughout their lives. Here are their answers:

John Scully, 79, resident of Florida

Photo courtesy of John Scully

When John Scully was born, America was in the midst of an epidemic: tens of thousands of children in the United States were falling ill with paralytic poliomyelitis — otherwise known as polio, a disease that attacks the central nervous system and often leaves its victims partially or fully paralyzed.

"As kids, we were all afraid of getting polio," he says, "because if you got polio, you could end up in the dreaded iron lung and we were all terrified of those." Iron lungs were respirators that enclosed most of a person's body; people with severe cases often would end up in these respirators as they fought for their lives.

John remembers going to see matinee showings of cowboy movies on Saturdays and, before the movie, shorts would run. "Usually they showed the news," he says, "but I just remember seeing this one clip warning us about polio and it just showed all these kids in iron lungs." If kids survived the iron lung, they'd often come back to school on crutches, in leg braces, or in wheelchairs.

"We all tried to be really careful in the summer — or, as we called it back then, 'polio season,''" John says. This was because every year around Memorial Day, major outbreaks would begin to emerge and they'd spike sometime around August. People weren't really sure how the disease spread at the time, but many believed it traveled through the water. There was no cure — and every child was susceptible to getting sick with it.

"We couldn't swim in hot weather," he remembers, "and the municipal outdoor pool would close down in August."

Then, in 1954 clinical trials began for Dr. Jonas Salk's vaccine against polio and within a year, his vaccine was announced safe. "I got that vaccine at school," John says. Within two years, U.S. polio cases had dropped 85-95 percent — even before a second vaccine was developed by Dr. Albert Sabin in the 1960s. "I remember how much better things got after the vaccines came out. They changed everything," John says.

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The difference between a politician and a public servant may be a matter of semantics, but when it comes to getting legislation passed that actually helps people, the contrast is stark.

Texas Representative James Talarico is on a mission to get his constituents the life-saving medicine they need. The 31-year-old lawmaker has just introduced legislation that would cap the price of insulin—a medicine people with type 1 diabetes need to live, which has become unaffordable for many—at $50 a month.

The mission is personal for Talarico, as he nearly died three years ago when he was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes.

He shared his story on Twitter:

"In May 2018, I was a healthy 28-year-old running for the Texas House. I decided to walk the entire length of my district and hold town halls along the way. I hike Big Bend every year, so I wasn't concerned about a 25 mile walk...

But halfway through the walk, I began feeling nauseous and fatigued. Before the town hall in Hutto, I vomited in the bathroom."

Keep Reading Show less
Images courtesy of John Scully, Walden University, Ingrid Scully
True

Since March of 2020, over 29 million Americans have been diagnosed with COVID-19, according to the CDC. Over 540,000 have died in the United States as this unprecedented pandemic has swept the globe. And yet, by the end of 2020, it looked like science was winning: vaccines had been developed.

In celebration of the power of science we spoke to three people: an individual, a medical provider, and a vaccine scientist about how vaccines have impacted them throughout their lives. Here are their answers:

John Scully, 79, resident of Florida

Photo courtesy of John Scully

When John Scully was born, America was in the midst of an epidemic: tens of thousands of children in the United States were falling ill with paralytic poliomyelitis — otherwise known as polio, a disease that attacks the central nervous system and often leaves its victims partially or fully paralyzed.

"As kids, we were all afraid of getting polio," he says, "because if you got polio, you could end up in the dreaded iron lung and we were all terrified of those." Iron lungs were respirators that enclosed most of a person's body; people with severe cases often would end up in these respirators as they fought for their lives.

John remembers going to see matinee showings of cowboy movies on Saturdays and, before the movie, shorts would run. "Usually they showed the news," he says, "but I just remember seeing this one clip warning us about polio and it just showed all these kids in iron lungs." If kids survived the iron lung, they'd often come back to school on crutches, in leg braces, or in wheelchairs.

"We all tried to be really careful in the summer — or, as we called it back then, 'polio season,''" John says. This was because every year around Memorial Day, major outbreaks would begin to emerge and they'd spike sometime around August. People weren't really sure how the disease spread at the time, but many believed it traveled through the water. There was no cure — and every child was susceptible to getting sick with it.

"We couldn't swim in hot weather," he remembers, "and the municipal outdoor pool would close down in August."

Then, in 1954 clinical trials began for Dr. Jonas Salk's vaccine against polio and within a year, his vaccine was announced safe. "I got that vaccine at school," John says. Within two years, U.S. polio cases had dropped 85-95 percent — even before a second vaccine was developed by Dr. Albert Sabin in the 1960s. "I remember how much better things got after the vaccines came out. They changed everything," John says.

Keep Reading Show less