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Arnold Schwarzenegger uses the perfect analogy to explain 'real freedom' to anti-maskers
via Becker1999 / Flickr and Gage Skidmore / Flickr

There is a big, gaping hole in the center of the belief that refusing to wear a mask or get vaccinated is a patriotic expression of the personal freedoms we enjoy as Americans.

Sure, you're free to do as you wish, but the fastest way for people to invite tyranny into their lives is to forget that freedom is predicated on responsibility and accountability.

Refusing to wear a mask in a place where COVID-19 is likely to spread puts yourself and others at risk. Refusing to get vaccinated only promotes the spread of the virus. The longer this pandemic goes on, the more likely it is that freedom-loving people will be subjected to punitive restrictions from lawmakers and businesses seeking to crack down on those who aren't being accountable.


Freedom must be accompanied by accountability or society quickly becomes uncivilized and that's a fertile breeding ground for authoritarianism.

Actor and former Republican California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger perfectly explained this delicate balance on Monday in an interview with CNN's Bianna Golodryga and former National Security Council staffer Alexander Vindman.

He blamed the continuation of the pandemic on those who are living in denial.

"A year and a half later, we are still in a mess and there are still people living in denial," Schwarzenegger said. "There are still people that don't believe in masks, there are still people out there who say, 'Well, we don't have to do social distancing,' and all this kind of stuff."

He explained that a big problem is that people have an immature grasp of what freedom really means.

"The only way we prevent it is we get vaccinated, we wear masks, we do social distancing, washing your hands all of the time, and not just to think about, 'Well, my freedom is being kind of disturbed here.' No, screw your freedom. Because with freedom comes obligations and responsibilities," he said.

The "Terminator" star used an analogy involving stoplights that everyone can understand.

"You cannot just say, 'I have the right to do x, y, and z,' when you affect other people. That is when it gets serious. It's like, no different than a traffic light. They put the traffic light in the intersection so someone doesn't kill someone else by accident. You cannot say, 'No one is going to tell me that I'm going to stop here, I'm going to go right through it.' Yeah, then you kill someone else, and it is your doing. It is the same thing with the virus. You cannot go and not put the mask on because when you breathe you can infect someone else, and you can infect someone that then gets sick and may die."

Those who doubt that freedom without responsibility leads to authoritarianism should look no further than recent history. Over the past year and a half, Americans have had to sacrifice a lot of their personal freedom because of a virus that thrives on a lack of accountability.

Those who truly love liberty should realize that we're at a tipping point where the best way to persevere it is to fight back with accountability instead of defiance.

Pop Culture

She bought the perfect wedding dress that went viral on TikTok. It was only $3.75

Lynch is part of a growing line of newlyweds going against the regular wedding tradition of spending loads of money.

Making a priceless memory

Upon first glance, one might think that Jillian Lynch wore a traditional (read: expensive) dress to her wedding. After all, it did look glamorous on her. But this 32-year-old bride has a secret superpower: thrifting.

Lynch posted her bargain hunt on TikTok, sharing that she had been perusing thrift shops in Ohio for four days in a row, with the actual ceremony being only a month away. Lynch then displays an elegant ivory-colored Camila Coelho dress. Fitting perfectly, still brand new and with the tags on it, no less.

You can find that exact same dress on Revolve for $220. Lynch bought it for only $3.75.
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This article originally appeared on 08.21.18


Addie Rodriguez was supposed to take the field with her dad during a high school football game, where he, along with other dads, would lift her onto his shoulders for a routine. But Addie's dad was halfway across the country, unable to make the event.

Her father is Abel Rodriguez, a veteran airman who, after tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, was training at Travis Air Force Base in California, 1,700 miles from his family in San Antonio at the time.

"Mom missed the memo it was parent day, and the reason her mom missed the memo was her dad left Wednesday," said Alexis Perry-Rodriguez, Addie's mom. She continued, "It was really heartbreaking to see your daughter standing out there being the only one without their father, knowing why he's away. It's not just an absentee parent. He's serving our country."

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Joy

1991 blooper clip of Robin Williams and Elmo is a wholesome nugget of comedic genius

Robin Williams is still bringing smiles to faces after all these years.

Robin Williams and Elmo (Kevin Clash) bloopers.

The late Robin Williams could make picking out socks funny, so pairing him with the fuzzy red monster Elmo was bound to be pure wholesome gold. Honestly, how the puppeteer, Kevin Clash, didn’t completely break character and bust out laughing is a miracle. In this short outtake clip, you get to see Williams crack a few jokes in his signature style while Elmo tries desperately to keep it together.

Williams has been a household name since what seems like the beginning of time, and before his death in 2014, he would make frequent appearances on "Sesame Street." The late actor played so many roles that if you were ask 10 different people what their favorite was, you’d likely get 10 different answers. But for the kids who spent their childhoods watching PBS, they got to see him being silly with his favorite monsters and a giant yellow canary. At least I think Big Bird is a canary.

When he stopped by "Sesame Street" for the special “Big Bird's Birthday or Let Me Eat Cake” in 1991, he was there to show Elmo all of the wonderful things you could do with a stick. Williams turns the stick into a hockey stick and a baton before losing his composure and walking off camera. The entire time, Elmo looks enthralled … if puppets can look enthralled. He’s definitely paying attention before slumping over at the realization that Williams goofed a line. But the actor comes back to continue the scene before Elmo slinks down inside his box after getting Williams’ name wrong, which causes his human co-star to take his stick and leave.

The little blooper reel is so cute and pure that it makes you feel good for a few minutes. For an additional boost of serotonin, check out this other (perfectly executed) clip about conflict that Williams did with the two-headed monster. He certainly had a way of engaging his audience, so it makes sense that even after all of these years, he's still greatly missed.