+
upworthy
Identity

LGBTQ book ban in South Carolina library thwarted after community stands up for acceptance

Read books, don’t ban them.

sc book ban, lgbtq books, south caolina

Children reading in a library.

Over the past two years, there has been a rash of attempted book bans in the United States. The idea that children are being “groomed” to become LGBTQ through schools and libraries has become de rigueur among conservatives. So politicians have been trying to make names for themselves by supporting banning books with LGBTQ themes from schools and libraries .

Do they think that by removing a book from a library it’ll prevent a child from being exposed to LGBTQ people?

Greenville, South Carolina, County Councilman Joe Dill, who recently lost the Republican primary and will be losing his seat, proposed a resolution that would ban books “promoting sexuality” in the children’s sections of public libraries.

The Greenville Republican Party had recently asked the council to remove the books “Daddy & Dada” about a girl and her two dads, “Teo’s Tutu” about a boy who does ballet and “Pride Puppy” about a dog at a pride parade. What's interesting is that the books don’t promote sexuality, they simply have gay characters. The books weren't telling kids to be LGBTQ, they were merely showing that these people exist.


Further, reading a book is about as likely to turn a heterosexual person gay as it is to turn a gay person straight. Not very likely. However, the benefits of someone being able to see themselves represented in media can play a big part in self-acceptance, which is very important given the high suicide rates among LGBTQ youth.

The Greenville County Council held a public debate featuring 10 speakers, five for the ban and five against, and the speeches were passionate.

Susan Ward, who has a gay son and is a member of PFLAG, discussed the importance of representation in books. “All of us worry about our children. I worry because my child has been subjected to hate and discrimination,” she said according to LGBTQ Nation.

“Every student—no matter their race, background, sexual orientation, or gender identity—deserves to feel safe and welcomed in schools, libraries, and bookstores alike. They deserve to read books and see themselves represented,” Carolyn Caldwell, president of Upstate Pride SC, said according to The State.

Barbara Evans, who supports the ban, made a speech where she conflated the idea of representation with promotion. “I can’t even believe we’re having this conversation. Of course, we shouldn’t have any sexual material in our children’s library,” she said. But is showing that a girl has two dads sexual? By that logic seeing the parents on “The Brady Bunch” being together is sexual as well.

At the end of the debate, the council voted 9 to 3 against discussing the proposed resolution. Many of those on the council didn’t believe they should interfere with how the library operates.

“If we pass this, we’re directing them and they have to do this according to us,” Chairman Willis Meadows said, according to The Post and Courier. Next, the issue will be taken up by the library system’s board of trustees. Let’s hope they have the same common sense.

Health

Dentist explains the 3 times you should never brush your teeth

Sometimes not brushing your teeth is the best way to protect them.

Representative Image from Canva

Add this to the list of things you didn't learn in health class.

For those who love the oh-so fresh feeling of immediately running to brush their teeth after a meal, we got some bad news.

London-based dental surgeon and facial aesthetics practitioner Dr. Shaadi Manouchehri recently shocked around 12 million viewers on TikTok after sharing the three occasions when you should “never” be scrubbing those pearly whites—if you want to actually protect your teeth, that is.

The hardest part about this video, which some viewers are undoubtedly still processing, is that each of these no-no times is exactly when brushing your teeth is the only thing you’ll want to do. So much for instincts.


Number one on Manouchehri’s list, which caused the most controversy in the comments, isright after vomiting. Yep, you read that right.

“This is because the contents of the stomach are extremely acidic and the mouth is already in a very acidic state so if you brush straight after [vomiting] you’re basically wearing away your enamel,” Manouchehri explained.

Of course, commenters weren’t willing to let this one go without a fight. One viewer wrote, “I would rather lose all of my teeth than not brush after vomiting.”

Manouchehri also says to avoid brushing your teeth directly after eating breakfast. This is because “when you’ve just eaten, the mouth is, again in a “very acidic state,” so if you’re brushing your teeth you’re rubbing that acid on the tooth, which wears down the enamel.” Other sources have also confirmed that brushing your teeth tight after any meal isn’t really recommended.

This goes double for right after sweets. Manouchehri says to wait a full 60 minutes before putting a toothbrush anywhere near your mouth after having something sugary. Because…you guessed it…acid.

Does this advice seem counterintuitive? Don’t worry, you’re not alone.

@drshaadimanouchehri #dentist #dentistry #dentaladvice #learnontiktok #funfacts #londondentist #dentalcleaning #teethbrushing #teethbrushingmadeeasy #teethbrushingtips #londondentistry #marylebonedentist #fypシ ♬ original sound - Dr Shaadi Manouchehri

“Ah, yes, the three times I want to brush my teeth more than any other time,” one person joked.

Luckily, there are few alternatives to try if you want that good, clean mouth feeling but don’t want to compromise your enamel—the simplest being to either rinse with or drink water. You can also use sugar-free chewing gum or conclude your meal with dairy or non-acidic foods, according to Advanced Dental Associates. If you still crave a little more of a hygiene bang, you can opt for a mouthwash with fluoride and using a tongue cleaner, which removes excess acid, per Curetoday.com.

Guess there’s a time and a place for everything, even when it comes to dental hygiene.

A Korean mother and her son

A recently posted story on Reddit shows a mother confidently standing up for her family after being bullied by a teacher for her culture. Reddit user Flowergardens0 posted the story to the AITA forum, where people ask whether they are wrong in a specific situation.

Over 5,600 people commented on the story, and an overwhelming majority thought the mother was right. Here’s what went down:

“I (34F) have a (5M) son who attends preschool. A few hours after I picked him up from school today, I got a phone call from his teacher,” Flowergardens0 wrote. “She made absolutely no effort to sound kind when she, in an extremely rude and annoyed tone, told me to stop packing my son such ‘disgusting and inappropriate’ lunches."



"I felt absolutely appalled when she said this, as me and the teacher have, up until now, always maintained a very friendly relationship. She added that the lunches I’m packing my son are ‘very distracting for the other students and have an unpleasant odor.’ I told her that I understand her concerns, as the lunches I pack are definitely not the healthiest, but the lunches are according to my son’s preferences.”


The mother added that she usually sends her son to school with small celery sticks, blue cheese and goat cheese, kimchi, spam and spicy Sriracha-flavored Doritos.

“I ended the call by saying that I very much appreciated her worries, but that at the end of the day, I am not going to drastically change my son’s lunches all of a sudden, and that it’s not my fault if other students are ‘distracted’ by his meal,” the mother continued. “It is very important to me what my son enjoys, and I want him to like my lunches.”

The teacher replied with an email saying the mom's response was "unacceptable" and that his lunches were “just too inappropriate to be sent to school any longer.”

“I haven’t responded yet and don’t want to. I want to maintain a healthy relationship with my son’s teachers. I am confused as to what to do,” the mom ended her story.

It’s clear that the teacher is way out of line in this situation because the child is eating food that is entirely normal in Korean culture. It may have a strong odor to those who aren’t used to it, but that’s just an opportunity for the teacher to explain to the children how people from different parts of the world eat different types of food. It’s not that hard.

The only reason the teacher should have any choice over what the child eats is if it is egregiously unhealthy and may cause them harm.

The most popular commenter on the forum suggested that the mother bring the issue to the principal’s attention.

"Report her to the principal," Thatshygal717 wrote. "Her comments regarding your son’s food are 'disgusting' and 'have an unpleasant tone' aka cough cough racist tone. She’s too inappropriate to be teaching at the school any longer."

Another commenter, muffiewriters, assured the mother that she was doing nothing wrong. "Your son's food is perfectly normal," they wrote. "For a 5-year-old. Your family's food is normal. The teacher is TA for not recognizing that.”

The mother hasn’t shared what she did next, but she’s handled the situation perfectly so far. She told the teacher that it’s not her fault if other kids are distracted by her food and that she will not change her son’s diet to please other people.

The beauty of America is that we are a country of many different cultures mixed like a beautiful bowl of salad. It’s great that so many people supported the mother and reminded her that her family has every right in the world to eat the food they love, and if it bothers anyone, they can keep it to themselves.

P.S. That teacher has no idea what she’s talking about. Korean food is delicious.


This article was originally published on 3.20.23.

A woman is shocked to learn that her name means something totally different in Australia.

Devyn Hales, 22, from California, recently moved to Sydney, Australia, on a one-year working visa and quickly learned that her name wouldn’t work Down Under. It all started when a group of men made fun of her on St. Patrick’s Day.

After she introduced herself as Devyn, the men laughed at her. "They burst out laughing, and when I asked them why, they told me devon is processed lunch meat,” she told The Daily Mail. It's similar to baloney, so I introduce myself as Dev now,” she said in a viral TikTok video with over 1.7 million views.

For those who have never been to Australia, Devon is a processed meat product usually cut into slices and served on sandwiches. It is usually made up of pork, basic spices and a binder. Devon is affordable because people buy it in bulk and it’s often fed to children. Australians also enjoy eating it fried, like spam. It is also known by other names such as fritz, circle meat, Berlina and polony, depending on where one lives on the continent. It's like in America, where people refer to cola as pop, soda, or Coke, depending on where they live in the country.


So, one can easily see why a young woman wouldn’t want to refer to herself as a processed meat product that can be likened to boloney or spam. "Wow, love that for us," another woman named Devyn wrote in the comments. “Tell me the name thing isn't true,” a woman called Devon added.

@dhalesss

#fypシ #australia #americaninaustralia #sydney #aussie

Besides changing her name, Dev shared some other differences between living in Australia and her home country.

“So everyone wears slides. I feel like I'm the only one with 'thongs'—flip-flops—that have the little thing in the middle of your big toe. Everyone wears slides,” she said. Everyone wears shorts that go down to your knees and that's a big thing here.”

Dev also noted that there are a lot of guys in Australia named Lachlan, Felix and Jack.

She was also thrown off by the sound of the plentiful magpies in Australia. According to Dev, they sound a lot like crying children with throat infections. “The birds threw me off,” she said before making an impression that many people in the comments thought was close to perfect. "The birds is so spot on," Jess wrote. "The birds, I will truly never get used to it," Marissa added.

One issue that many Americans face when moving to Australia is that it is more expensive than the United States. However, many Americans who move to Australia love the work-life balance. Brooke Laven, a brand strategist in the fitness industry who moved there from the U.S., says that Aussies have the “perfect work-life balance” and that they are “hard-working” but “know where to draw the line.”

Despite the initial cultural shocks, Devyn is embracing her new life in Australia with a positive outlook. “The coffee is a lot better in Australia, too,” she added with a smile, inspiring others to see the bright side of cultural differences.

Family

Smart mom leaves babysitter a list of 'add-on' chores to make more money if she chooses

“You are more than welcome to hang out and watch TV all night, but if you want to make some extra $, these jobs are up for grabs.”

via KIvanKC/TikTok and KIvanKC/TikTok. Images used with permission.

Katrina Ivan's list for her babysitter.

A mother in Missouri has found a way to maximize date night with her husband. She left a note for her babysitter, giving her options to make more side cash by completing small tasks around the home.

The goal was to have a night out and to return to a cleaner and better-organized home. It makes sense. Most of the time, babysitters just sit around while the kid sleeps, so why not make their time more productive and profitable?

Katrina Ivan, a science teacher, posted the list she sent her babysitter on TikTok and the video received over 1.5 million views.


​“You are more than welcome to hang out and watch TV all night, but if you want to make some extra $, these jobs are up for grabs,” Katrina wrote to her babysitter, a senior in high school whom she’s known for 4 years.

babysitters, babysitter prices, katrina ivan

Katrina's list for the babysitter.

via KIvanKC/TikTok Used with permission.

When the babysitter saw the list, she was excited to get to work and started cleaning the windows 10 minutes after Katrina and her husband left the house. Katrina realized her plan was working when she saw her cleaning the windows through her Ring camera. “She was like, ‘Heck ya!' and got to work right away,” Katrina told Today.com. "I left all the supplies out for her so she didn't have to feel weird hunting around for things."

By the end of the night, the babysitter was able to clean the mirrors and windows, organize the toys, vacuum the couch and scrub and organize the silverware drawer.

"I think this is a great opportunity for your babysitter. You’re giving a choice, and I love that," Lisa B wrote in the comments on the video. "This is a great idea!! Sometimes it’s boring to just to sit and watch TV. This makes time go by quicker and sometimes it’s things I would do to help," Del added.

Most commenters applauded Katrina’s idea, although some thought she could pay a little better.

"I think $10 is too cheap for some of these tasks considering the amount of work/size of the mess," Liz wrote. In a follow-up video, Katrina broke down the money she paid the babysitter that night.

@kivankc

Replying to @LISA B │✨ what i'm learning ✨ #greenscreen

Katrina agreed that the prices could go up a bit. "I’ll definitely be restructuring the prices to make this more fair in the future," she wrote. However, she added that she paid the babysitter $75 for the night just to watch her 2-year-old son, who was asleep most of the time.

All in all, the sitter made $28.75 an hour, tax-free. Not bad at all.

In another follow-up, Katrina interviewed the babysitter, who said she enjoyed making some extra money. “That sounds great,” she said.

What questions do you have for the newly famous babysitter? She’s along for the ride, and enjoys the spotlight. Loving the money, and crushing the jobs we leave for her. Sorry friends, but she’s not available to book-this kid is wayyy to busy between date night babysitting for us, earning perfect grades, being involved in a zillion after school activiites, and taking night time Fire/EMS classes at night so she can start her CAREER fresh out of high school. Do I sound a little proud?!?

@kivankc

What questions do you have for the newly famous babysitter? She’s along for the ride, and enjoys the spotlight. Loving the money, and crushing the jobs we leave for her. Sorry friends, but she’s not available to book-this kid is wayyy to busy between date night babysitting for us, earning perfect grades, being involved in a zillion after school activiites, and taking night time Fire/EMS classes at night so she can start her CAREER fresh out of high school. Do I sound a little proud?!? #sorrynotsorry #sillyinterview #babysitter #bestbabysitter #sidequests #meetmybabysitter #cheers #toddlermom #momlife

This article originally appeared on 2.6.24

Pop Culture

Nicole Kidman shares the unconventional marriage rule she has with husband Keith Urban

They've had this communication rule since the very beginning of their 18 year relationship.

Keith Urban (left) Nicole Kidman (right)

Long before Nicole Kidman began her long-term relationship with AMC theaters, she was committed to husband and country singer Keith Urban. The two have happily been together since 2006—which is a good run for any modern day marriage, but most certainly a Hollywood one.

And perhaps their nearly decades-long success can be partially attributed to one surprising communication rule: no texting.

While appearing on the Something To Talk About podcast in 2023, Kidman shared that she was the one who initiated the unconventional agreement.

"We never text each other, can you believe that? We started out that way – I was like, 'If you want to get a hold of me, call me…"I wasn't really a texter.,” the “Moulin Rouge” actress shared.

She added that while Urban did attempt texting her a few items early on, he eventually switched when Kidman wasn’t very responsive. And now, 18 years later, they only call each other.

“We just do voice to voice or skin to skin, as we always say. We talk all the time and we FaceTime but we just don’t text because I feel like texting can be misrepresentative at times…I don’t want that between my lover and I,” she told Parade

.

There are, of course, some pros and cons to calling over texting. Research has shown that people who call feelmore connected to one another vs. texting, with the voice being an integral component of bonding. As our society becomes increasingly more distant and lonely, finding those moments might be more important than ever.

At the same time, calling can invoke a lot more anxiety compared to texting, which could lead someone to not communicating at all. Also, I don’t know about you, but the thought of having to call my partner for mundane things like “don’t forget the eggs” would drive me crazy.

But regardless of whether or not you adopt Kidman and Urban’s no-texting rule, perhaps the bigger takeaway is that relationship longevity depends on being able to establish your own rules. One that feels good and that each partner is able to stick to. Especially when it comes to communication.

As Urban himself told E! News at the CMT Music Awards, "I have no advice for anybody,You guys figure out whatever works for you…We're figuring it out. You figure it out. Everybody's different. There's no one size fits all."

Luckily, there are many ways to have good text hygiene, without having to do away with it completely. Very Well Mind suggests to avoid texting too many questions, and to be respectful of your partner's schedule (probably best to not text them while they’re sleeping just to say “hey,” for example). Nor should texting be used to argue or deal with conflict. Lastly, probably save the lengthy, in-depth conversations for a phone call. Fifteen heart emojis are totally fine though.