Lots of high school students have a bit of a rebellious streak in them, but most don't show it in the form of incredibly thorough research papers.

That's exactly what one junior at a Missouri Catholic high school claims to have done in a recent post on Reddit. According to the original poster, who goes by the name "averagesmurf," the assignment was to write a paper tackling a "moral dilemma" between the church's teachings and modern life. In his case, he was tasked with writing about same-sex marriage.

Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images.


According to another post of his, the teacher who assigned the paper is pretty virulently anti-gay, making unfounded arguments about gay relationships being unhealthy, saying that "kids need a mom and a dad," and suggesting that gay men are predisposed to be pedophiles.

So instead of writing a paper that agreed with the church's view on the issue, the student turned it in an awesomely full-throated defense of equality for all.

The paper, titled "Gay Marriage Is Fabulous," weighs in at 127 pages and is a straight-up cool passion project.

Citing books, blogs, and sources of all sorts, the author makes a strong case pushing back on anti-LGBTQ teachings in the church. But it gets even better once you learn a bit more about why the author felt it was so important to write.

You see, the concluding paragraph in the paper is a very personal paragraph, one that stands out above all.

The author needs you, the reader, to know that he is bisexual. And he needs you, the reader, to know that his sexual orientation does not make him a mistake. In the spirit of the assignment, he even cites the Bible as proof:

"God created you, and he made no mistakes, God created me bisexual, and he made no mistakes, and he creates some people gay, and makes no mistakes: 'For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected' (1 Tim. 4.4-5). Marriage is not between man and woman, marriage is between love and love. Love is not wrong, love is not a mistake, love is not an abomination, love is just love."

Four months ago, the author of the paper shared an emotional post on Reddit that gives some insight into why he refused to write the paper the way his teacher assigned it.

In that post, he wrote about coming to terms with his own bisexuality in the face of forces like school, religion, and a potentially unaccepting family.

"I'm starting to really get why people hate when other people say, 'it's a choice.' Of course it's not a choice, no one would choose to be hated or condemned by friends and family, they just want to be happy. I'm so glad I've found these friends, because I know they accept me for who I am and that no matter what they'll always love me, they're one-of-a-kind, and I love them."

The note is so relatable for anyone who's ever come out as LGBTQ or needed a bit of help from friends and loved ones. You can almost feel the odd mix of anxiety, relief, joy, and sadness in the words themselves.

This 127-page paper is so much more than a rebellious troll against a teacher who refuses to accept him for who he is.

It's a powerful statement of truth and a defense of who the author is as a person.

It is, as the title of the paper says, fabulous. Check out the full paper here.

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Man uses TikTok to offer 'dinner with dad' to any kid that needs one, even adult ones

Summer Clayton is the father of 2.4 million kids and he couldn’t be more proud.

Come for the food, stay for the wholesomeness.

Summer Clayton is the father of 2.4 million kids and he couldn’t be more proud. His TikTok channel is dedicated to giving people intimate conversations they might long to have with their own father, but can’t. The most popular is his “Dinner With Dad” segment.

The concept is simple: Clayton, aka Dad, always sets down two plates of food. He always tells you what’s for dinner. He always blesses the food. He always checks in with how you’re doing.

I stress the stability here, because as someone who grew up with a less-than-stable relationship with their parents, it stood out immediately. I found myself breathing a sigh of relief at Clayton’s consistency. I also noticed the immediate emotional connection created just by being asked, “How was your day?” According to relationship coach and couples counselor Don Olund, these two elements—stability and connection—are fundamental cravings that children have of their parents. Perhaps we never really stop needing it from them.


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Connecticut Senator Chris Murphy asked his Senate colleagues the questions millions of Americans have after a mass shooting.

Another school shooting. Another mass murder of innocent children. They were elementary school kids this time. There were 18 children killed—so far—this time.

The fact that I can say "this time" is enraging, but that's the routine nature of mass shootings in the U.S. It happened in Texas this time. At least three adults were killed this time. The shooter was a teenager this time.

The details this time may be different than the last time and the time before that, and the time before that, and the time before that. But there's one thing all mass shootings have in common. No, it's not mental illness. It's not racism or misogyny or religious extremism. It's not bad parenting or violent video games or lack of religion.

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Joy

Meet Eva, the hero dog who risked her life saving her owner from a mountain lion

Wilson had been walking down a path with Eva when a mountain lion suddenly appeared.

Photo by Didssph on Unsplash

A sweet face and fierce loyalty: Belgian Malinois defends owner.

The Belgian Malinois is a special breed of dog. It's highly intelligent, extremely athletic and needs a ton of interaction. While these attributes make the Belgian Malinois the perfect dog for police and military work, they can be a bit of a handful as a typical pet.

As Belgian Malinois owner Erin Wilson jokingly told NPR, they’re basically "a German shepherd on steroids or crack or cocaine.”

It was her Malinois Eva’s natural drive, however, that ended up saving Wilson’s life.

According to a news release from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, Wilson had been walking down a path with Eva slightly ahead of her when a mountain lion suddenly appeared and swiped Wilson across the left shoulder. She quickly yelled Eva’s name and the dog’s instincts kicked in immediately. Eva rushed in to defend her owner.

It wasn’t long, though, before the mountain lion won the upper hand, much to Wilson’s horror.

She told TODAY, “They fought for a couple seconds, and then I heard her start crying. That’s when the cat latched on to her skull.”

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