An internet troll tried to school a lawyer on immigration. She clapped back.

Women are tired of mansplaining bullshit.

Just ask Rabia Chaudry, a critically acclaimed immigration attorney, who was live-tweeting (and fact-checking) President Donald Trump's 2018 State of the Union address on Jan. 30.

During his televised address, Trump announced his plans to protect the American "nuclear family" by clamping down further on immigration. He went on to inaccurately claim that the current immigration system allows a single immigrant to bring in an "unlimited number of distant relatives."


That's simply not true.

Image via Rabia Chaudry.

As Chaudry pointed out, while documented immigrants can sponsor their parents, spouses, and children, "distant relatives" are not eligible for residency sponsorship. (Cousins, grandparents, aunts, and uncles are considered "distant relatives.")

But of course, an anonymous person on the internet had something to say about that.

Twitter user FullMetalBitch3 replied to Chaudry claiming, without evidence, she was wrong since "chain migration has allowed sponsorships of in-laws, cousins, etc."

In response, Chaudry did not mince her words. It only took five words for an epic clapback.

"I'm a fucking immigration lawyer," Chaudry tweeted.

In a matter of minutes, the tweet went viral with hilarious (and very real) responses flooding in her mentions. And though FullMetalBitch3's gender remains unclear, the troll's behavior has reminded many people of their own encounters with "splainers," and in particular, "mansplainers."

In an interview with Upworthy, Chaudry said that she normally avoids engaging with internet trolls on Twitter — but she was on an important mission: to spread the truth.

"In a space like Twitter, we aren't always dealing with real people, we are often battling armies of misinformation bots," Chaudry said. "And while I don't believe in arguing with bots, there are people out there who are watching quietly, not sure about the truth. It's important to keep putting the truth out there for them."

There is undeniably a phenomenon of far-right trolls and some Trump supporters of refusing to accept or consider impenetrable evidence and/or facts debunking some of the misinformation and blatant lies coming from the White House. Chaudry said part of that is the Trump administration spending a "tremendous amount" of effort to undermine all forms of institutions.

"From science to democracy to media to intel, this administration is engaged in an onslaught to confuse people, create a fog of war that destroys the confidence of citizens in anything and everything," she added. "And they have many handmaidens that are instrumental in this goal — Fox, Breitbart, even the silence of the GOP itself."

If, by now, you've realized Chaudry's name sounds familiar — it should.

Through her 14 years of experience practicing immigration law and her commitment to truth, Chaudry has become a central figure to the first season of the "Serial" podcast. Her book, "Adnan's Story: The Search for Truth and Justice After Serial" is listed as a New York Times best-seller, and her podcast "Undisclosed" has more than 200 million downloads.

But her expertise and impact extends far beyond immigration law.

The 43-year-old mother is also a well-respected and prominent voice in the national security field and is the recipient of numerous prestigious awards, such as the Truman National Security Project's 2015 Harry S. Truman Award for Communications and Media Influence. Chaudry is also widely sought after as a public speaker and writer on national security, civil rights, religion, and gender, and she often trains law enforcement officers on understanding the Islamic faith.

Despite her remarkable expertise in the intersection of immigration, law, and national security, Chaudry says she still deals with the occasional moments of splaining.

And she calls the perpetrators out, particularly when they are men.

"I've learned to take up space with my body — I'm short and I wear hijab, which renders me invisible to some — and to be strongly declarative," the lawyer said. "I don't hedge much anymore, and that seems to help shut the mansplainers down."

Chaudry, who also happens to be Muslim, said that her experience is obviously not unique.

"Fake news and bots aside, I think women in general — Muslim or not, accomplished or not, expert or not) consistently are challenged by the 'but actuallys' of confident, but uninformed, men," Chaudry said. "I've learned over the years to change the language, verbal and physical, I use to help convey my expertise. Many women do couch their statements in terms that are less assertive, use body language that is not too confrontational."

But what does Chaudry say that other women and male allies can do to fight against the microaggressions of splaining?

"By doing what they did with that very basic tweet about immigration — share the voices of others," she added. "Just share, amplify, and echo. It validates the voices, opinions, expertise of those who have to fight to prove it otherwise."

It's one thing to see a little kid skateboarding. It's another to see a stereotype-defying little girl skateboarding. And it's entirely another to see Paige Tobin.

Paige is a 6-year-old skateboarding wonder from Australia. A recent video of her dropping into a 12-foot bowl on her has gone viral, both for the feat itself and for the style with which she does it. Decked out in a pink party dress, a leopard-print helmet, and rainbow socks, she looks nothing like you'd expect a skater dropping into a 12-foot bowl to look. And yet, here she is, blowing people's minds all over the place.

For those who may not fully appreciate the impressiveness of this feat, here's some perspective. My adrenaline junkie brother, who has been skateboarding since childhood and who races down rugged mountain faces on a bike for fun, shared this video and commented, "If I dropped in to a bowl twice as deep as my age it would be my first and last time doing so...this fearless kid has a bright future!"

It's scarier than it looks, and it looks pretty darn scary.

Paige doesn't always dress like a princess when she skates, not that it matters. Her talent and skill with the board are what gets people's attention. (The rainbow socks are kind of her signature, however.)

Her Instagram feed is filled with photos and videos of her skateboarding and surfing, and the body coordination she's gained at such a young age is truly something.

Here she was at three years old:

And here she is at age four:


So, if she dropped into a 6-foot bowl at age three and a 12-foot bowl at age six—is there such a thing as an 18-foot bowl for her to tackle when she's nine?

Paige clearly enjoys skating and has high ambitions in the skating world. "I want to go to the Olympics, and I want to be a pro skater," she told Power of Positivity when she was five. She already seems to be well on her way toward that goal.

How did she get so good? Well, Paige's mom gave her a skateboard when she wasn't even preschool age yet, and she loved it. Her mom got her lessons, and she's spent the past three years skating almost daily. She practices at local skate parks and competes in local competitions.

She also naturally has her fair share of spills, some of which you can see on her Instagram channel. Falling is part of the sport—you can't learn if you don't fall. Conquering the fear of falling is the key, and the thing that's hardest for most people to get over.

Perhaps Paige started too young to let fear override her desire to skate. Perhaps she's been taught to manage her fears, or maybe she's just naturally less afraid than other people. Or maybe there's something magical about the rainbow socks. Whatever it is, it's clear that this girl doesn't let fear get in the way of her doing what she wants to do. An admirable quality in anyone, but particularly striking to see in someone so young.

Way to go, Paige. Your perseverance and courage are inspiring, as is your unique fashion sense. Can't wait to see what you do next.

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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