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saints, canonization, god, modern-day saints

Bernie Sanders, Steve Irwin, Dolly Parton.

It's hard to pin down the exact number of people who have been canonized or beatified by the Catholic church, but scholars say the number may be beyond 10,000. The most recent canonization by Pope Francis was Margherita della Metola in April of this year.

Margherita della Metola was an Italian Roman Catholic and professed member of the Third Order of Saint Dominic who lived 1287 to 1320.

A satirical Facebook page for God a.k.a. The Good God Above has nearly 4 million followers and he asked them an important question on November 1: "I have not canonized any new saints in a while. Any suggestions?"

via God/Facebook

The post received more than 9,000 responses of people debating which modern-day heroes are so holy they deserve to become saints. We decided to rank the top 20 vote-getters based on how many likes they received after being nominated by a commenter.

The number one vote-getter won by a landslide.

(Note: Some people were mentioned multiple times, so the numbers on the posted comments aren't the only numbers that we considered.)

Here are the top 20 people "God's" followers believe should become saints.



Alex Trebek (1940 - 2020)

via Facebook/The Good God Above

"Who should be a saint?" for $800, Alex. Trebek was the host of "Jeopardy!" for 37 years and one of the most recognizable TV personalities of all time. He should be canonized for his calm presence on one of TV's most tense game shows.

Lemmy Kilmister (1945 - 2015)

Ian Fraser Kilmister was known worldwide by one name: Lemmy. The lead singer and bassist of Motörhead should be canonized for partying as hard as he rocked. "I don't do regrets," Lemmy once said. "Regrets are pointless. It's too late for regrets. You've already done it, haven't you? You've lived your life. No point wishing you could change it."

George Takei (1937 - )

Takei has had one of the greatest second acts in American life. He became a sci-fi legend and one of the first Asian-American TV stars in the late '60s as Sulu on "Star Trek." In the social media era he's become one of the most popular faces of trending content. He should be canonized for the incredible work he's done for the LGBTQ community.

Pope Francis (1936 - )

Born Jorge Mario Bergoglio, Pope Francis has been one of the most popular and controversial Popes of the modern era for his unapologetically progressive views. He should be canonized for his work on climate change reform.

Sir Terry Pratchett (1948 - 2015)

Pratchett was an English humorist, satirist and author of comic fantasy novels, including the "Discworld" series. He should be canonized for celebrating all of the quirky and strange things that happen in "real life."

Brandon Stanton (1984 - )

Stanton is an American author, photographer and blogger best known for "Humans of New York," a photoblog and book. He should be canonized for his portraits of strangers who share intimate stories of strength, addiction, redemption, regret and love.

David Bowie (1947 - 2016)

Bowie is one of the most enigmatic performers of the past century whose work highlighted the concept of the outsider, whether it was an astronaut in space or someone living outside of traditional gender norms. Bowie should be canonized for showing humanity that there are no limitations on who they can be and how they can change.

Sir David Attenborough (1926 - )

Sir David Attenborough is the undisputed father of the nature documentary. Throughout his eight-decade career, his gentle, awestruck voice has served as humanity's guide to nature. He should be canonized for "Life on Earth," his series that examined the role of evolution in nature.

Dr. Anthony Fauci (1940 - )

Dr. Fauci, the director of the National Institutes of Health, has come to the forefront of American life for his leadership during the COVID-19 pandemic. He should be canonized for not losing his mind during former president Trump's long, rambling and factually inaccurate COVID briefings in 2020.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg (1933 - 2020)

The "Notorious RBG" became a liberal, feminist icon for championing women's rights as a member of the U.S. Supreme Court from 1993 to her death. She should be canonized for her strongly worded dissents in women's rights cases.

Robin Williams (1961 - 2014)

Williams was one of the most unique performers the world has ever seen. He completely changed American comedy with his intense, high-energy improvisational comedy performances on stage, TV and in film. He was also a talented actor, winning critical acclaim in films such as "Good Morning Vietnam," "Mrs. Doubtfire" and "Dead Poets Society." He should be canonized for his child-like love of whimsy.

Bob Ross (1942 - 1995)

Ross was the creator and host of "The Joy of Painting," an instructional television program that aired from 1983 to 1994 on PBS. His infectious love of art, distinctive hair and gentle voice made him the ultimate calming presence. He should be canonized for teaching the world how to paint "happy little trees."

Elon Musk (1971 - )

Musk is the closest we'll have to a living Bond villain. He's a visionary billionaire who isn't shy about wanting to change the world, from how we travel to spend money. Like him or not, he should be canonized for creating the Tesla, a high-performance electric car that brought EVs into the mainstream.

George Carlin (1937 to 2008)

Carlin came to prominence as a counter-culture comic in the '70s where he was famous for outlining the "seven dirty words you can't say on television." However, clips of him from the late '90s and early 2000s where he eviscerates American greed, materialism and entitlement have made him still relevant to this day. He should be canonized for this incredible clip where he discusses the fact that there's a big club and "you're not in it."

"It's called the American Dream because you have to be asleep to believe it."

George Carlin - It's A BIG Club & You Ain't In It!

Fred Rogers (1928 - 2003)

Rogers touched the lives of countless children from 1968 to 2001 as the host of PBS' "Mister Rogers' Neighborhood." The puppeteer, songwriter and Presbyterian minister revolutionized children's television and should be canonized for changing the way we think about the inner lives of young children.

Jimmy Carter (1924 - )

Carter served as president of the United States from 1977 to 1981 and his biggest accomplishment was the Camp David Accords that ended the Israeli-Egyptian disputes. His post-presidency life has been dedicated to humanitarianism causes through the Carter Center and Habitat for Humanity. Carter was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2002.

Carter should be canonized for his humility and commitment to service.

Steve Irwin (1962 - 2006)

The "Crocodile Hunter" wowed audiences by fearlessly tangling with deadly snakes, spiders, lizards and crocodiles. But at his heart, he was a true lover of nature and wildlife, and an educator who shared his knowledge and enthusiasm for animals with millions. Irwin should be canonized for his many contributions to the field of wildlife education and conservation.

Dolly Parton (1946 - )

Parton is such a national treasure that when they began pulling down Confederate statues in Tennessee a few years back, there was a petition to have them replaced with statues of Dolly. As a musician, Parton has sung some of the biggest hits in country music history, including "I Will Always Love You" and "Islands in the Stream." But she has also been a generous philanthropist, helping charities that benefit children and veterans.

If you got the COVID-19 vaccine you should thank Dolly. In 2020, she donated $1 million to help fund vaccine research at Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

Dolly should be canonized for creating the Imagination Library that has donated more than 100 million books to children.

Bernie Sanders (1941 - )

Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders is one of the most beloved political figures in the United States because he has always stood on the side of the oppressed and the working class regardless of whether it was popular. He's refused to be bought by Wall Street and has stood up against the Department of Defense, the fossil fuel industry, drug companies and private prison industries.

He should be canonized for his relentless quest to provide healthcare for all Americans.

Keanu Reeves (1964 - )

Reeves is a beloved figure in Hollywood because of his kind, down-to-earth nature. There are countless anecdotes around the internet of Reeves going out of his way to please a fan or inviting a member of the paparazzi to his table to sit with him during dinner. "The internet's boyfriend" is also a gentleman who never touches women when taking a photo with them.

Reeves should be canonized for quietly donating millions to children's hospitals.

Joy

Nurse turns inappropriate things men say in the delivery room into ‘inspirational’ art

"Can you move to the birthing ball so I can sleep in the bed?"

Holly the delivery nurse.

After working six years as a labor and delivery nurse Holly, 30, has heard a lot of inappropriate remarks made by men while their partners are in labor. “Sometimes the moms think it’s funny—and if they think it’s funny, then I’ll laugh with them,” Holly told TODAY Parents. “But if they get upset, I’ll try to be the buffer. I’ll change the subject.”

Some of the comments are so wrong that she did something creative with them by turning them into “inspirational” quotes and setting them to “A Thousand Miles” by Vanessa Carlton on TikTok.

“Some partners are hard to live up to!” she jokingly captioned the video.

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All images provided by Adewole Adamson

It begins with more inclusive conversations at a patient level

True

Adewole Adamson, MD, of the University of Texas, Austin, aims to create more equity in health care by gathering data from more diverse populations by using artificial intelligence (AI), a type of machine learning. Dr. Adamson’s work is funded by the American Cancer Society (ACS), an organization committed to advancing health equity through research priorities, programs and services for groups who have been marginalized.

Melanoma became a particular focus for Dr. Adamson after meeting Avery Smith, who lost his wife—a Black woman—to the deadly disease.

melanoma,  melanoma for dark skin Avery Smith (left) and Adamson (sidenote)

This personal encounter, coupled with multiple conversations with Black dermatology patients, drove Dr. Adamson to a concerning discovery: as advanced as AI is at detecting possible skin cancers, it is heavily biased.

To understand this bias, it helps to first know how AI works in the early detection of skin cancer, which Dr. Adamson explains in his paper for the New England Journal of Medicine (paywall). The process uses computers that rely on sets of accumulated data to learn what healthy or unhealthy skin looks like and then create an algorithm to predict diagnoses based on those data sets.

This process, known as supervised learning, could lead to huge benefits in preventive care.

After all, early detection is key to better outcomes. The problem is that the data sets don’t include enough information about darker skin tones. As Adamson put it, “everything is viewed through a ‘white lens.’”

“If you don’t teach the algorithm with a diverse set of images, then that algorithm won’t work out in the public that is diverse,” writes Adamson in a study he co-wrote with Smith (according to a story in The Atlantic). “So there’s risk, then, for people with skin of color to fall through the cracks.”

Tragically, Smith’s wife was diagnosed with melanoma too late and paid the ultimate price for it. And she was not an anomaly—though the disease is more common for White patients, Black cancer patients are far more likely to be diagnosed at later stages, causing a notable disparity in survival rates between non-Hispanics whites (90%) and non-Hispanic blacks (66%).

As a computer scientist, Smith suspected this racial bias and reached out to Adamson, hoping a Black dermatologist would have more diverse data sets. Though Adamson didn’t have what Smith was initially looking for, this realization ignited a personal mission to investigate and reduce disparities.

Now, Adamson uses the knowledge gained through his years of research to help advance the fight for health equity. To him, that means not only gaining a wider array of data sets, but also having more conversations with patients to understand how socioeconomic status impacts the level and efficiency of care.

“At the end of the day, what matters most is how we help patients at the patient level,” Adamson told Upworthy. “And how can you do that without knowing exactly what barriers they face?”

american cancer society, skin cacner treatment"What matters most is how we help patients at the patient level."https://www.kellydavidsonstudio.com/

The American Cancer Society believes everyone deserves a fair and just opportunity to prevent, find, treat, and survive cancer—regardless of how much money they make, the color of their skin, their sexual orientation, gender identity, their disability status, or where they live. Inclusive tools and resources on the Health Equity section of their website can be found here. For more information about skin cancer, visit cancer.org/skincancer.

The mesmerizing lost art of darning knit fabric.

For most of human history, people had to make their own clothing by hand, and sewing skills were subsequently passed down from generation to generation. Because clothing was so time-consuming and labor-intensive to make, people also had to know how to repair clothing items that got torn or damaged in some way.

The invention of sewing and knitting machines changed the way we acquire clothing, and the skills people used to possess have largely gone by the wayside. If we get a hole in a sock nowadays, we toss it and replace it. Most of us have no idea how to darn a sock or fix a hole in any knit fabric. It's far easier for us to replace than to repair.

But there are still some among us who do have the skills to repair clothing in a way that makes it look like the rip, tear or hole never happened, and to watch them do it is mesmerizing.

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Pop Culture

Artist uses AI to create ultra realistic portraits of celebrities who left us too soon

What would certain icons look like if nothing had happened to them?

Mercury would be 76 today.

Some icons have truly left this world too early. It’s a tragedy when anyone doesn’t make it to see old age, but when it happens to a well-known public figure, it’s like a bit of their art and legacy dies with them. What might Freddie Mercury have created if he were granted the gift of long life? Bruce Lee? Princess Diana?

Their futures might be mere musings of our imagination, but thanks to a lot of creativity (and a little tech) we can now get a glimpse into what these celebrities might have looked like when they were older.

Alper Yesiltas, an Istanbul-based lawyer and photographer, created a photography series titled “As If Nothing Happened,” which features eerily realistic portraits of long gone celebrities in their golden years. To make the images as real looking as possible, Yesiltas incorporated various photo editing programs such as Adobe Lightroom and VSCO, as well as the AI photo-enhancing software Remini.

“The hardest part of the creative process for me is making the image feel ‘real’ to me,” Yesiltas wrote about his passion project. “The moment I like the most is when I think the image in front of me looks as if it was taken by a photographer.”

Yesiltas’ meticulousness paid off, because the results are uncanny.

Along with each photo, Yesiltas writes a bittersweet message “wishing” how things might have gone differently … as if nothing happened.
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