"Black Panther" is well on its way to making the folks at Disney and Marvel a pretty penny, crushing the $700 million mark in just its second weekend.

Beloved by audiences and critics alike, the latest installment in the Marvel Cinematic Universe is a naysayer-defying behemoth worthy of a Wakandan king. It did so well that director Ryan Coogler even penned a heartwarming message to fans thanking them for their excitement and support.

GIF from "Black Panther."


On Feb. 26, Disney announced plans to donate $1 million to the Boys and Girls Clubs of America, going toward the group's youth STEM programs.

According to a press release, Disney made the donation to boost kids in science, technology, engineering, and math fields in celebration of the record-breaking success of "Black Panther."

Disney chairman and CEO Robert Iger praised the film for its status as an "instant cultural phenomenon" and for "sparking discussion, inspiring people young and old, and breaking down age-old industry myths." Iger pointed to the movie's incorporation of STEM concepts in explaining why the organization chose the Boys and Girls Clubs for the donation.

The money will be used by Boys and Girls Clubs to develop its STEM curriculum and build new STEM Centers of Innovation in Atlanta, Baltimore, Chicago, Harlem, Hartford, Memphis, New Orleans, Oakland, Orlando, Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., and Watts, California.

Image via Marvel Entertainment.

It's possible that Disney landed on this decision out of the kindness of their hearts, but they might have gotten a little inspiration to act.

A petition on Change.org that was launched before the film's release urged Disney to donate 25% of the film's profits to black communities around the U.S. To date, the petition, which asks Disney to put money into "programs within [black communities] that focus on STEM," has received just over 8,500 signatures. The company never officially acknowledged the petition.

To be sure, $1 million is obviously a lot less than 25% of Disney's "Black Panther" profits, and it's almost certainly just pocket change to one of the world's largest companies. Still, it's something, and that money is going to help some kids do some cool things in life. That's hopefully something we can all get behind.

GIF from "Black Panther."

Photo from Dole
True

As you sit down to eat your breakfast in the morning or grab an afternoon snack, take a minute to consider your food, how it was made, and how it got to your plate.

The fruit on your plate were grown and picked on farms, then processed, packaged and sent to the grocery store where you bought them.

Sounds simple, right?

The truth is, that process is anything but simple and at every step in the journey to your plate, harm can be caused to the people who grow it, the communities that need it, and the planet we all call home.

For example, thousands of kids live in food deserts and areas where access to affordable and nutritious food is limited. Around the world, one in three children suffer from some form of malnutrition, and yet, up to 40% of food in the United States is never eaten.

Keep Reading Show less
Photo by Mahir Uysal on Unsplash

Two years ago, I got off the phone after an interview and cried my eyes out. I'd just spent an hour talking to Tim Ballard, the founder of Operation Underground Railroad, an organization that helps fight child sex trafficking, and I just couldn't take it.

Ballard told me about how the training to go undercover as a child predator nearly broke him. He told me an eerie story of a trafficker who could totally compartmentalize, showing Ballard photos of kids he had for sale, then switching gears to proudly show him a photo of his own daughter on her bicycle, just as any parent would. He told me about how lucrative child trafficking is—how a child can bring in three or four times as much as a female prostitute—and how Americans are the industry's biggest consumers.

Keep Reading Show less
Photo from Dole
True

As you sit down to eat your breakfast in the morning or grab an afternoon snack, take a minute to consider your food, how it was made, and how it got to your plate.

The fruit on your plate were grown and picked on farms, then processed, packaged and sent to the grocery store where you bought them.

Sounds simple, right?

The truth is, that process is anything but simple and at every step in the journey to your plate, harm can be caused to the people who grow it, the communities that need it, and the planet we all call home.

For example, thousands of kids live in food deserts and areas where access to affordable and nutritious food is limited. Around the world, one in three children suffer from some form of malnutrition, and yet, up to 40% of food in the United States is never eaten.

Keep Reading Show less

I saw this poster today and I was going to just let it go, but then I kept feeling tugged to say something.

Melanie Cholish/Facebook

While this poster is great to bring attention to the issue of child trafficking, it is a "shocking" picture of a young girl tied up. It has that dark gritty feeling. I picture her in a basement tied to a dripping pipe.

While that sounds awful, it's important to know that trafficking children in the US is not all of that. I can't say it never is—I don't know. What I do know is most young trafficked children aren't sitting in a basement tied up. They have families, and someone—usually in their family—is trafficking them.

Keep Reading Show less

Most women, at one point or another, have felt some wariness or fear over a strange man in public. Sometimes it's overt, sometimes it's subtle, but when your instincts tell you something isn't right and you're potentially in danger, you listen.

It's an unfortunate reality, but reality nonetheless.

A Twitter thread starting with some advice on helping women out is highlighting how real this is for many of us. User @mxrixm_nk wrote: "If a girl suddenly acts as if she knows you in public and acts like you're friends, go along w[ith] it. She could be in danger."

Other women chimed in with their own personal stories of either being the girl approaching a stranger or being the stranger approached by a girl to fend off a situation with a creepy dude.

Keep Reading Show less