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AOC raised $2 million in less than 24 hours to provide aid to struggling Texans

As millions of Texans have suffered through a disastrous winter weather crisis this week, people around the country have rallied to offer support in any way they can. Northerners who are accustomed to winter power outages have offered advice for staying warm, volunteers around the country have participated in welfare check phone calls to seniors around the state, and Americans of all political persuasions are donating money to aid organizations on the ground trying to get people's basic needs met.

Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez stepped up with her team to assist in that effort yesterday, and ended up raising a whopping $2 million in less than 24 hours. The money will be distributed evenly between the following aid organizations: Feeding Texas, The Bridge Homeless Recovery Center, North Texas Food Bank, ECHO (Ending Community Homelessness Coalition), Food Bank of the Rio Grande Valley, Corazon Ministries, Central Texas Food Bank, Family Eldercare, and Houston Food Bank.

AOC has also announced that she will be flying to Texas to meet with Houston Representative Sylvia Garcia and highlight what's happening there and "amplify needs and solutions."



Meanwhile, the Biden administration immediately approved requests from the state for FEMA assistance, and did so without any jabs about being a red state or criticizing Texas leadership. The White House has reached out to more than a dozen mayors of cities throughout Texas to see what they need the most, and federal assistance already sent has included generators, fuel, blankets, and water.

This is what that elusive idea of "unity" actually looks like. By definition, to unite means to come together around a common purpose. It doesn't mean to always agree, it doesn't mean to compromise on injustice, and it doesn't even mean to always meet in the middle. Unity means seeing the needs and working on meeting them in ways that do the most good for the most people. It means setting aside petty political bickering and taking care of what needs to be taken care of. It means seeing people as Americans first, not blue or red, liberal or conservative, Democrat or Republican.

There are many people in Texas who have viciously attacked AOC for her politics who will now be directly helped by the fundraising she organized for them. There are many in Texas who badmouth the federal government and think Biden is a demonic baby eater who will be directly helped by the aid being sent by his administration. It doesn't matter. The people of Texas are Americans who are suffering, and the whole country is reaching out to help them. That's unity, no matter how many partisan barbs people throw around at one another.

Mister Rogers said to "look for the helpers" in a crisis, and helpers right now are coming from all sides of the political spectrum. While there are legitimate debates to be had about Texas political policy leading this disaster, right now Americans are suffering and need immediate assistance. Let's unite around that need, offer genuine gratitude to everyone who's lending a hand, and recognize real unity when we see it play out.

Then let's apply that same idea of unity to the multiple disasters we're facing as a nation, from the COVID-19 pandemic to the economic crisis to the looming environmental impacts of climate change. We can disagree on how best to meet those challenges, but we can't deny that they exist or pretend that the needs are not dire and immediate. We're watching the whole country unite around Texas—there's no real reason we can't apply the same energy to the country as a whole.

This article originally appeared on 04.15.19


On May 28, 2014, 13-year-old Athena Orchard of Leicester, England, died of bone cancer. The disease began as a tumor in her head and eventually spread to her spine and left shoulder. After her passing, Athena's parents and six siblings were completely devastated. In the days following her death, her father, Dean, had the difficult task of going through her belongings. But the spirits of the entire Orchard family got a huge boost when he uncovered a secret message written by Athena on the backside of a full-length mirror.

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via Pixabay

A beautiful Christmas tree lot.

Hallmark has produced more than 300 holiday-themed movies over the past decade and they tend to be romantic comedies or stories about families that reunite around Christmas. The movies are meant to be comfort food on a cold winter’s night, so no one seems to mind that they’re filled with predictable plot lines and cliches.

Hallmark movies have become a big part of America's holiday tradition. Last year, more than 80 million people watched at least part of one.

Each film usually begins with a single woman in a small, quaint town having a meet-ugly or a meet-cute with her love interest. In a meet-ugly scenario, the boy and girl are either adversaries in a cause or inadvertently injure one another in a freak accident. If it's a meet-cute scenario, the two randomly run into each other and have an instant connection.

Regardless of how they meet, the couple falls for each other and then a major misunderstanding drives them apart before they are brought together again

Writer Shyla Watson went Christmas tree shopping on November 27 and inadvertently found herself in a situation that resembled the first act of a Hallmark holiday movie. Her tweet about it quickly went viral, receiving more than 72,000 likes.

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Photo by Roméo A. on Unsplash

Cat hilariously rats out owner in front of the landlord.

Maybe it's a right of passage into adulthood or maybe some landlords discriminate against pets because they can't tell people kids are forbidden in their residence. Either way, just about everyone has lived in a rental home that didn't allow pets. Most people just abide by the rules and vow to get a pet when they find a new home.

Some people, on the other hand, get creative. I once came across a post on social media where someone claimed their pit bull puppy was actually a silver Labrador. But one woman on TikTok was harboring a secret cat in her rental that had a no pets policy, and either her cat was unaware or he was aware and was simply being a jerk.

My money is on the latter since cats are known to be jerks for no reason. I mean, have you ever left something on the counter for a few minutes? They make it their mission to knock it on the floor. So I fully believe this fluffy little meow box wanted to make his presence known in an effort to rat out his owner.

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Pop Culture

The Gen X grief when a 'Sesame Street' character dies is so real

We're the first generation to have educational programs molding our core memories.

Bob McGrath, one of the original "Sesame Street" actors, has passed away.

"A loaf of bread, a container of milk and a stick of butter."

It's a simple, repeated line from a one-minute sketch, but as a Gen Xer raised on public television, it's one of thousands of "Sesame Street" segments etched into my brain. Such memories still pop into my head at random times, clear as day, well into my forties. Bert singing about his oatmeal box while playing it like a drum. Kermit lamenting that it's not easy—but it is beautiful—being green. Buffy Saint-Marie breastfeeding her baby and explaining it to Big Bird. Mr. Hooper—the sweet, bow-tied man who ran the Sesame Street corner store—dying.

I was 8 when Mr. Hooper died. It was a big deal. I rewatched part of that episode recently to see what I'd think of it as an adult. The "Sesame Street" gang of 1983 handled it masterfully, helping us all process his unexpected death through Big Bird's own experience of learning about what it means to die.

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