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Congress just passed a historic LGBT rights bill. And it's only the beginning.

Congress just passed a historic LGBT rights bill. And it's only the beginning.

It's a historic day: The house just passed a bill that will provide nationwide anti-discrimination protection for the LGBT+ community and extend protection to women and people of color.

The bill, known as H.R. 5, is an extension of 1964's Civil Rights Act. It's meant to ensure that those who identify as LGBT+ can't be discriminated against at work, school, when seeking housing, and when participating in federally funded programs (among other things).


While many believe that the LGBT+ community already has all of these protections (especially after gay marriage was made legal), the reality is that gay, lesbian, transgender, and non-binary individuals can still be legally discriminated against in many parts of The United States. In fact, they can even be fired for their sexual orientation and gender identity in 26 states.  

Because these states don't have laws that protect these members of our society, individuals that are treated unfairly at school, let go from their jobs, or denied housing because they are LGBT+ have no legal recourse when it comes to fighting discrimination there. This bill attempts to rectify that, making it clear that all Americans are first-class citizens regardless of how they identify or their sexual preference. (sidebar: Isn't it strange that we have to keep reminding ourselves we're in 2019 because the laws that either govern us or are being passed are so goddamn archaic?)

Of course, this is just one hurdle we've crossed on the long, arduous road to equality. While the bill has passed 236-173 in the house, it still needs to pass the senate in order to become law and there will be some major opposition there. OUT reports that voters have generally been supportive of moves towards equality, but that doesn't mean that republican senators will be.

One republican congressman actually quoted Coretta Scott King when denouncing the bill on the house floor.

"Coretta Scott King wisely said, 'Freedom is never really won. We earn it and win it in every new generation,'" said Ross Spano of Florida. "H.R. 5 is bad for freedom. You see, it would immediately expose churches, religious schools and universities and faith-based organizations to legal liability for simply following their earnest beliefs."

First of all: Gross to invoke King's name like that.

Second of all: Rest assured that this is only the beginning. The way that it will always be only the beginning until all of us are seen as equal in the eyes of the law. There will be many more people who will try to tear this bill down, but there will also be countless others who will fight for it with everything they've got.

And that's why we're not ending this on a dark note. There's lots to be hopeful about when it comes to equal rights — in America and around the world. Case in point, just recently in Taiwan, the government legalized same-sex unions. In The US, we'll continue fighting for equality.

As presidential hopeful Elizabeth Warren said this morning: "LGBTQ Americans deserve to be treated equally, no matter where they live – or who they love."

A map of the United States post land-ice melt.


Land ice: We got a lot of it.

Considering the two largest ice sheets on earth — the one on Antarctica and the one on Greenland — extend more than 6 million square miles combined ... yeah, we're talkin' a lot of ice.

But what if it was all just ... gone? Not like gone gone, but melted?

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Photo by Hu Chen on Unsplash

Meeting a new sibling can go either way, but this big brother's reaction was the sweetest.

We've all seen our fair share of older-sibling-meets-new-baby videos, which are generally pretty darn adorable. But once in a while, one comes along that socks us square in the heart and has us desperately reaching for a tissue.

Brace yourselves, friends, because this is one video that truly requires a tissue warning.

Shared by @brianaarielle89 on TikTok, the video shows a preschooler dressed up in a dinosaur costume entering a hospital room to meet his newborn sibling for the first time. He asks, "Mommy, where is Hudson?" and is guided over to the cot where his baby brother is bundled.

At first, he walks right past him. But then he turns, sees him and simply stares for a few seconds.

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It's rare enough to capture one antler being shed

For those not well versed in moose facts, the shedding of antlers is normally a fairly lengthy process. It happens only once a year after mating season and usually consists of a moose losing one antler at a time.

It’s incredibly rare for a bull moose to lose both at the same time—and even more rare that someone would actually catch it on film.

That’s why shed hunter (yes, that’s a real term) and woodsman Derek Burgoyne calls his footage of the phenomenon a “one-in-a-million” shot.

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Pop Culture

From comedies to kickass concerts, these two creatives are here to make social impact fun

Aaron Brown and Lenny Barszap raised millions for the unhoused community in a movement they've named "Trojan-horse social impact."

Lenny Barszap (Left) Aaron Brown (right)/ (The Pharcyde, Brownout, Adrian Quesada, Lenny Barszap, Chris Rogers (muralist), Chris Baker (TOOF), Aaron Brown) - photo credit IIsmael Quintanilla III

Have fun doing good.

There is often a distinct line between social impact—that is, something meant to provoke thought, connect us to our humanity, inspire positive change, etc.—and entertainment, which provides us a fun escape.

But sometimes that line can become blurred in innovative ways, allowing entertainment itself to be the change agent.

This is the concept behind creative partners Aaron Brown (Onion Creek Productions) and Lenny Barszap (Entertaining Entertainment)’s Been There music festivals, which are specifically intended to be social movements in disguise.

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Pop Culture

Two brothers Irish stepdancing to Beyoncé's country hit 'Texas Hold 'Em' is pure delight

The Gardiner Brothers and Queen Bey proving that music can unite us all.

Gardiner Brothers/TikTok (with permission)

The Gardiner Brothers stepping in time to Beyoncé's "Texas Hold 'Em."

In early February 2024, Beyoncé rocked the music world by releasing a surprise new album of country tunes. The album, Renaissance: Act II, includes a song called "Texas Hold 'Em," which shot up the country charts—with a few bumps along the way—and landed Queen Bey at the No.1 spot.

As the first Black female artist to have a song hit No. 1 on Billboard's country music charts, Beyoncé once again proved her popularity, versatility and ability to break barriers without missing a beat. In one fell swoop, she got people who had zero interest in country music to give it a second look, forced country music fans to broaden their own ideas about what country music looks like and prompted conversations about bending and blending musical genres and styles.

And she inspired the Gardiner Brothers to add yet another element to the mix—Irish stepdance.

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Pop Culture

Man tries to correct a female golfer's swing, having no idea she's actually a pro

“My hope is that he comes across this video and it keeps him up at night."

Representative Image from Canva

A man tried to tell a pro golfer she was swing too slow.

We’re all probably familiar with the term “mansplaining,” when a man explains something to a woman in a condescending or patronizing way. Often, this comes in the form of a man explaining a subject to a woman that she already knows on an expert level. The female neuroscientist who was told by a man that she should read a research paper she actually wrote comes to mind.

Recently the next-level mansplaining was caught in the wild. Well, at a golf driving range anyway.

Georgia Ball, a professional golfer and coach who’s racked up over 3 million likes on TikTok for all her tips and tricks of the sport, was minding her own business while practicing a swing change.

It takes all of two seconds on Google to see that when it comes to incorporating a swing change, golfers need to swing slower, at 50-75% their normal speed…which is what Ball was doing.

And this is what prompted some man to insert his “advice.”

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