A feminist songwriter explained equality in a way 'even our president can understand.'

One night in late 2016, singer, songwriter, and satirist Rachel Lark was performing her song "Free the Nipple," just like she had many times before. But something just didn't feel right.

"I just had to stop and say to the audience, 'Wow, guys, I'm sorry. If we just elected Trump, we are clearly not advanced enough as a society to be having that debate right now,'" she explains in an email.


The conversation about censorship of female versus male nipples — while undoubtedly important — seemed moot in the wake of the United States electing to the highest office a man who has openly joked about committing sexual assault.

If she was going to really make a difference with her music, Lark knew was going to have to break things down into even more basic terms.

Image by Rachel Lark/YouTube.

It doesn't get much simpler than the title of her newest song, punctuated with an exclamation mark for emphasis: "Women Are People!"

"Lately I've been concerned that the type of debate I'm trying to have around feminism is a little too complicated for the world we're living in," she says at the beginning of the video.

"So I thought I'd bring it right back down to basics, to a first-grade reading level, so even our president can understand."

In the video, she gathers a group of small children — and, pointedly, some grown men — and asks them some basic questions:

"Do you guys that think frogs are people?"

"Noooooo!" the kids shout.

"Do you think that Popsicles are people?"

"Nooooo!"

"But do you think that women are people?"

"Yeeeeah!" they all say.

See. Kids get it.

The lyrics are both absurdly obvious and, apparently, completely necessary at the same time.

"Women are people / Women are people / They have thoughts and feelings," Lark sings.

"Your mom — she's a person! / And your teacher — she's a person! / And little girls are people too."

"Nurses — they're people! / Even strippers — they're people! / No matter what it is they do."

"The song is an anthem for those of us who are sick of breaking down really obvious feminist causes to people who want to reverse progress rather than build on it," Lark says.

She adds that explaining incredibly elementary things like "Sexual harassment is bad" and "Birth control is health care" gets exhausting.

Maybe, just maybe, by going back to basics and making sure the whole world understands that yes, women are indeed people, everything else will fall in line.

Lark was especially impressed by the smarts and thoughtfulness of the kids she featured in the video.

Now if only the grown-ups would catch on.

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Frito-Lay

Did you know one in five families are unable to provide everyday essentials and food for their children? This summer was also the hungriest on record with one in four children not knowing where their next meal will come from – an increase from one in seven children prior to the pandemic. The effects of COVID-19 continue to be felt around the country and many people struggle to secure basic needs. Unemployment is at an all-time high and an alarming number of families face food insecurity, not only from the increased financial burdens but also because many students and families rely on schools for school meal programs and other daily essentials.

This school year is unlike any other. Frito-Lay knew the critical need to ensure children have enough food and resources to succeed. The company quickly pivoted to expand its partnership with Feed the Children, a leading nonprofit focused on alleviating childhood hunger, to create the "Building the Future Together" program to provide shelf-stable food to supplement more than a quarter-million meals and distribute 500,000 pantry staples, school supplies, snacks, books, hand sanitizer, and personal care items to schools in underserved communities.

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In 1945, the world had just endured the bloodiest war in history. World leaders were determined to not repeat the mistakes of the past. They wanted to build a better future, one free from the "scourge of war" so they signed the UN Charter — creating a global organization of nations that could deter and repel aggressors, mediate conflicts and broker armistices, and ensure collective progress.

Over the following 75 years, the UN played an essential role in preventing, mitigating or resolving conflicts all over the world. It faced new challenges and new threats — including the spread of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction, a Cold War and brutal civil wars, transnational terrorism and genocides. Today, the UN faces new tensions: shifting and more hostile geopolitics, digital weaponization, a global pandemic, and more.

This slideshow shows how the UN has worked to build peace and security around the world:

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Malians wait in line at a free clinic run by the UN Multidimensional Integrated Mission in Mali in 2014. Over their 75 year history, UN peacekeepers have deployed around the world in military and nonmilitary roles as they work towards human security and peace. Here's a look back at their history.

Photo credit: UN Photo/Marco Dormino

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