A dad gets a standing ovation for his message to boys interested in dating his daughter.

We've seen the sitcom storyline so many times.

The lovable, funny dad hates every boy that's even a tad bit romantically interested in his daughter.

It's an old TV trope that's definitely stuck around. It's even the entire premise of some shows ("8 Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter," anyone?).


GIF from "8 Simple Rules."

Clearly, the cliche is good for a laugh every now and then. But here's a question: What does this old trope really say about us?

After all, dads (in both the TV world and the real one) don't seem to get as bent out of shape over who their sons date. And, correct me if I'm wrong, but moms tend to be more open to the crazy notion of getting to know their daughters' male love interests before graduating to threats of violence.

GIF from "Gilmore Girls."

Poet (and father) Jesse Parent brilliantly skewers this overprotective dad trope in "To the Boys Who May One Day Date My Daughter."

In the satirical performance, which you can see in the video by Button Poetry below, Parent hilariously (and maybe a bit disturbingly) goes into graphic detail about the violence he'll resort to if you happen to date his teenage daughter.

GIFs via Button Poetry/YouTube.

Again, the performance is satirical, and Parent is in no way advocating violence. What he is doing is making fun of the idea that a father like himself would be so irrationally devoted to keeping his daughter away from another male that he'd become homicidal.

It's funny in that "haha ... wait a second..." kind of way. Because he's really getting at an unfortunate truth.

"It's a common trope: the man who'd rather lock his daughter in a tower until she's 40 than have to watch some hormone-ravaged 17-year-old paw at her," Beckie Smith wrote for The Telegraph in 2013. "It reflects an insidious and damaging need to control young women's behavior, long after we abandoned the idea that a daughter is her father's property."

Women, of course, aren't their dads' property anymore (thank God). And we live in a time and place where women — at least on paper — are equal to men (I mean, not when it comes to their reproductive rights, or how much they get paid for doing equal work, or the sexism they face in the workplace ... but ... sigh ... those are for another day).

So, is it that big of a deal when a sitcom dad cracks a few jokes about strangling his daughter's prom date?

Well ... yeah.

Girls and women are still fighting to be viewed as autonomous equals to boys and men when it comes to their bodies and decision-making.

When a parent is more protective over their daughter's dating life than their son's, it can be a subtle (and oftentimes subconscious) way of communicating that they trust their son's ability to make positive decisions for himself more than their daughter's.

It can also place more importance on a young woman's "innocence" and "purity" (*eye roll*), which, to be honest, is just a stone's throw away from slut-shaming.

Don't get me wrong: There's nothing wrong with parents being protective of their kids.

But the level of "irrational parent guarding their child from suitable mates" should be the same for both daughters and sons. Period.

Check out Parent's funny, insightful performance below:

Courtesy of Verizon
True

If someone were to say "video games" to you, what are the first words that come to mind? Whatever words you thought of (fun, exciting, etc.), we're willing to guess "healthy" or "mental health tool" didn't pop into your mind.

And yet… it turns out they are. Especially for Veterans.

How? Well, for one thing, video games — and virtual reality more generally — are also more accessible and less stigmatized to veterans than mental health treatment. In fact, some psychiatrists are using virtual reality systems for this reason to treat PTSD.

Secondly, video games allow people to socialize in new ways with people who share common interests and goals. And for Veterans, many of whom leave the military feeling isolated or lonely after they lose the daily camaraderie of their regiment, that socialization is critical to their mental health. It gives them a virtual group of friends to talk with, connect to, and relate to through shared goals and interests.

In addition, according to a 2018 study, since many video games simulate real-life situations they encountered during their service, it makes socialization easier since they can relate to and find common ground with other gamers while playing.

This can help ease symptoms of depression, anxiety, and even PTSD in Veterans, which affects 20% of the Veterans who have served since 9/11.

Watch here as Verizon dives into the stories of three Veteran gamers to learn how video games helped them build community, deal with trauma and have some fun.

Band of Gamers www.youtube.com

Video games have been especially beneficial to Veterans since the beginning of the pandemic when all of us — Veterans included — have been even more isolated than ever before.

And that's why Verizon launched a challenge last year, which saw $30,000 donated to four military charities.

And this year, they're going even bigger by launching a new World of Warships charity tournament in partnership with Wargaming and Wounded Warrior Project called "Verizon Warrior Series." During the tournament, gamers will be able to interact with the game's iconic ships in new and exciting ways, all while giving back.

Together with these nonprofits, the tournament will welcome teams all across the nation in order to raise money for military charities helping Veterans in need. There will be a $100,000 prize pool donated to these charities, as well as donation drives for injured Veterans at every match during the tournament to raise extra funds.

Verizon is also providing special discounts to Those Who Serve communities, including military and first responders, and they're offering a $75 in-game content military promo for World of Warships.

Tournament finals are scheduled for August 8, so be sure to tune in to the tournament and donate if you can in order to give back to Veterans in need.

Courtesy of Verizon

Ready for the weekend? Of course, you are. Here's our weekly dose of good vibes to help you shed the stresses of the workweek and put yourself in a great frame of mind.

These 10 stories made us happy this week because they feature amazing creativity, generosity, and one super-cute fish.

1. Diver befriends a fish with the cutest smile

Hawaiian underwater photographer Yuki Nakano befriended a friendly porcupine fish and now they hang out regularly.

Keep Reading Show less