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Identity

Here's how 18 people got over being homophobic, proving there's hope for everyone

"I looked for logical reasons to be and couldn't find any."

lgbtq, homopbobia, overcoming homophobia

Homophobia? Get over it.

There are many different reasons why some people are homophobic. A lot of them are raised in religious households where homosexuality is seen as sinful and they never get over their indoctrination.

A study from 2018 found that people who foster homophobic attitudes are less intelligent than those who accept people regardless of their sexuality. For the study, researchers asked subjects if they agree or disagree with the following statement: “Homosexual couples should have the same rights as heterosexual couples do.”

After comparing data sets, researchers found that the lower a person's cognitive intelligence, the more likely they are to be homophobic.

An older study from 2016 using an eye-tracking device found that some homophobic men seem to have an impulsive, automatic attraction to other men.

Homophobic attitudes are more prevalent in people with authoritarian personality types. Authoritarians have “submissive attitudes toward strong leaders, a desire to punish all who violate conventional moral codes, and strong fear that conventional morality is breaking down.”


There are also some who believe that humans evolved to be homophobic because it favors the propagation of the species. "In its simplest form, parents who showed a concern for their child’s sexual orientation may have left more descendants than those who were indifferent,” Gordon Gallup, a human sexuality researcher, wrote.

(It should be noted that Gallup formulated his theory in the ‘80s.)

Regardless of how people become homophobic, the good news is that Americans are slowly becoming more accepting of LGBTQ people. A Reddit user by the name of aestheticbear wanted to prove that everyone is capable of losing their homophobic views by asking the subforum, “What happened that made you stop being homophobic?”

According to the posts, growing up and meeting people who are LGBTQ was one of the most effective ways for people to get over their homophobia. It also helped when they got away from religious parents and began to see the world with their own eyes.

Here are 18 of the best ways that people got over being homophobic.

1. 

"I met some gay people. As it turns out they were just people." — moolord

2. 

"Not homophobic, but I woke up at about 10 when my mom said my uncle was banned from coming to our vacation condo by my father because he was gay. Before then I kind of let the arguments and both sides bit wash over me, but that was a crystalization point where I started noticing it as pure bigotry. I'm sorry the nicest dude in the family full of domestic violence and white-collar drug abusers cant come to Christmas because he's gay? You're both cheating on each other, sanctity of what marriage now?" — Robin_Games

3. 

"My mom slapped me and told me everyone has a right to be happy. That was in 9th grade 13 years ago." — Bloodllust

4. 

"Homophobia was the norm when I was growing up, then I got older and the political landscape changed which made me question my belief and I came to the conclusion it just didn't make any sense to be homophobic." — LuciferIsFallen

5. 

"I came out as gay." — pethal

6

"Realised that, fundamentally, being gay is just 'what' you are. It’s not 'who' you are." — Alternative-Rain-718

7. 

"I wasn't super homophobic, just a 'love the sinner, hate the sin' kind of guy. On my last day in high school, someone said 'Why do I care? They're not hurting me.' Cured me in three seconds. I still remember how magical that moment was for me." — Dirgonite

8. 

"Stopped listening to my homophobic family and left their religion. Oh and also realized I myself was pretty gay." — Raidden

9. 

"There are 20 years between myself and my youngest brother. I (and my SO) was raised in an explicitly homophobic/biphobic/transphobic fundamentalist religion (that I left with my SO in my early 20s) so I had a lot of internalized, conditioned, toxic beliefs about the LGBTQ that needed to be deconstructed. My little brother was obviously either gay or bi and it was obvious from the time he was six imho. He came out to my sisters, SO, and I as bi when he was 11 and we were like "tell us something we don't know lol." I think watching him just grow up, it was obvious that he hadn't chosen to be that way, it was just how he was. This false narrative that LGBTQ are somehow defective or sinners became more disgusting to me over time.

I can't remember exactly when it happened but my SO and I were like 'if our future child happened to be LGBTQ, could we teach that child the things we were taught about the LGBTQ?" We were like "no, that would be evil.'

Now, we have an 18yo niece that recently came out as a lesbian and we feel honored to be the only family that she trusts enough to introduce to her first GF. Spending time with her just reaffirms the fact that there is nothing wrong with the LGBTQ, it was our upbringing that was defective." — Jormungandr91

10. 

"I was in the military during the repeal of don’t ask don’t tell. I wasn’t pro-gay whatever that might mean but sitting in those mandatory command meetings really opened my eyes. There were some legit homophobes trying every trick in the book to justify everything from moving sleeping arrangements to outright violence out in the open with gay people in the room.

I may not have been super sympathetic before that but after I realized just how difficult it was for a gay person just to go to work. Or how many precautions they were taking on a daily basis to keep in the closet. It pushed me from disinterested in the subject to siding with the obviously pragmatic stance of pro-gay marriage and gays in the military." — Pencilowner

11. 

"Went off to college, started meeting gay people, quickly realized that their awesomeness was no different than any straight person’s awesomeness, stopped bothering to “otherize” them as I had in high school." — hailnaux

12. 

"I became good friends with someone who came out to me a year or so after we got to know each other. Turns out he wasn't the abomination that my Christian parents/church had taught me all gays were. Indoctrination of children is a bitch." — Vefantur

13. 

"Honestly I think it was Lady Gaga. I was young and impressionable and she was cool and so LGBT+ friendly that I just started accepting people. And then it turned out I was a lil gay too so things worked out well lol." — plutoforprez

14. 

"I grew up and met some openly gay people." — polkavert

15. 

"I became an atheist. Through a painful experience of getting through serious depression, I came out the other side with a different worldview. As soon as I shed religion I began to question a lot of things including how I really feel about LGBTQIA people vs what I'd been indoctrinated to believe. They are just people trying to go about their normal routine like myself. There's no vast conspiracy or 'gay agenda.'

Years later, I suspect I'm one of them now. I might be asexual but I'm not sure yet." —HonestSummer

16. 

"As a teen I loved to make fun/bash gay people and listen to heavy metal. Then one day Rob Halford from Judas Priest came out as gay. Well, he is fucking Rob Halford and he can do whatever the fuck he wants. He is Rob Halford and being gay did not make him any less amazing in my eyes. After that I stopped caring about people being gay or not. Who am I to second guess or mock Rob Halford's life choices?" — cambeiu

17.

"I looked for logical reasons to be and couldn't find any." — theyellowmeteor

18. 

"I grew up." — jthomas287

Pop Culture

Here’s a paycheck for a McDonald’s worker. And here's my jaw dropping to the floor.

So we've all heard the numbers, but what does that mean in reality? Here's one year's wages — yes, *full-time* wages. Woo.

Making a little over 10,000 for a yearly salary.


I've written tons of things about minimum wage, backed up by fact-checkers and economists and scholarly studies. All of them point to raising the minimum wage as a solution to lifting people out of poverty and getting folks off of public assistance. It's slowly happening, and there's much more to be done.

But when it comes right down to it, where the rubber meets the road is what it means for everyday workers who have to live with those wages. I honestly don't know how they do it.


Ask yourself: Could I live on this small of a full-time paycheck? I know what my answer is.

(And note that the minimum wage in many parts of the county is STILL $7.25, so it would be even less than this).

paychecks, McDonalds, corporate power, broken system

One year of work at McDonalds grossed this worker $13,811.18.

assets.rebelmouse.io

This story was written by Brandon Weber and was originally appeared on 02.26.15

Bill Gates in conversation with The Times of India

Bill Gates sure is strict on how his children use the very technology he helped bring to the masses.

In a recent interview with the Mirror, the tech mogul said his children were not allowed to own their own cellphone until the age of 14. "We often set a time after which there is no screen time, and in their case that helps them get to sleep at a reasonable hour," he said. Gates added that the children are not allowed to have cellphones at the table, but are allowed to use them for homework or studying.


The Gates children, now 20, 17 and 14, are all above the minimum age requirement to own a phone, but they are still banned from having any Apple products in the house—thanks to Gates' longtime rivalry with Apple founder Steve Jobs.

smartphones, families, responsible parenting, social media

Bill Gates tasting recycled water.

Image from media.giphy.com.

While the parenting choice may seem harsh, the Gates may be onto something with delaying childhood smartphone ownership. According to the 2016 "Kids & Tech: The Evolution of Today's Digital Natives"report, the average age that a child gets their first smartphone is now 10.3 years.

"I think that age is going to trend even younger, because parents are getting tired of handing their smartphones to their kids," Stacy DeBroff, chief executive of Influence Central, told The New York Times.

James P. Steyer, chief executive of Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization that reviews content and products for families, additionally told the Times that he too has one strict rule for his children when it comes to cellphones: They get one when they start high school and only when they've proven they have restraint. "No two kids are the same, and there's no magic number," he said. "A kid's age is not as important as his or her own responsibility or maturity level."

PBS Parents also provided a list of questions parents should answer before giving their child their first phone. Check out the entire list below:

  • How independent are your kids?
  • Do your children "need" to be in touch for safety reasons—or social ones?
  • How responsible are they?
  • Can they get behind the concept of limits for minutes talked and apps downloaded?
  • Can they be trusted not to text during class, disturb others with their conversations, and to use the text, photo, and video functions responsibly (and not to embarrass or harass others)?
  • Do they really need a smartphone that is also their music device, a portable movie and game player, and portal to the internet?
  • Do they need something that gives their location information to their friends—and maybe some strangers, too—as some of the new apps allow?
  • And do you want to add all the expenses of new data plans? (Try keeping your temper when they announce that their new smartphone got dropped in the toilet...)


This article originally appeared on 05.01.17

Democracy

This Map Reveals The True Value Of $100 In Each State

Your purchasing power can swing by 30% from state to state.

Image by Tax Foundation.

Map represents the value of 100 dollars.


As the cost of living in large cities continues to rise, more and more people are realizing that the value of a dollar in the United States is a very relative concept. For decades, cost of living indices have sought to address and benchmark the inconsistencies in what money will buy, but they are often so specific as to prevent a holistic picture or the ability to "browse" the data based on geographic location.

The Tax Foundation addressed many of these shortcomings using the most recent (2015) Bureau of Economic Analysis data to provide a familiar map of the United States overlaid with the relative value of what $100 is "worth" in each state. Granted, going state-by-state still introduces a fair amount of "smoothing" into the process — $100 will go farther in Los Angeles than in Fresno, for instance — but it does provide insight into where the value lies.


The map may not subvert one's intuitive assumptions, but it nonetheless quantities and presents the cost of living by geography in a brilliantly simple way. For instance, if you're looking for a beach lifestyle but don't want to pay California prices, try Florida, which is about as close to "average" — in terms of purchasing power, anyway — as any state in the Union. If you happen to find yourself in a "Brewster's Millions"-type situation, head to Hawaii, D.C., or New York. You'll burn through your money in no time.

income, money, economics, national average

The Relative Value of $100 in a state.

Image by Tax Foundation.

If you're quite fond of your cash and would prefer to keep it, get to Mississippi, which boasts a 16.1% premium on your cash from the national average.

The Tax Foundation notes that if you're using this map for a practical purpose, bear in mind that incomes also tend to rise in similar fashion, so one could safely assume that wages in these states are roughly inverse to the purchasing power $100 represents.


This article originally appeared on 08.17.17

What dog is best for you?


PawsLikeMe might know you better than you know yourself.

Hello from the other siiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiide!!! I'm a dog and I love youuuuuuuu!!!

Because PawsLikeMe knows about your dreams.

Your DOG dreams, that is.

How? A dog-human personality quiz!

A sophisticated one, too! From their website:

"The personality assessment is based on 4 core personality traits that influence the human-canine bond; energy, focus, confidence, and independence."

It also takes into account environmental factors and other special circumstances as well.

It's not uncommon for dogs that are adopted to be returned because they just aren't compatible with their owner's life.



PawsLikeMe aims to stop dog-owner mismatch by playing dog matchmaker! Its goal is to help people find the right dog for them.

Need a dog that's friendly with kids but loves learning tricks and is also house-trained? DONE. Have other specific requirements? DONE!

Ya got options.

When you go on the website, you can opt to just answer the four most important questions in a dog owner's life:

1. What's your energy level?

2. What kind of parties do you like?

3. What kind of dog personality do you want?

4. What is your personality like?

After those four questions, you can begin searching for a doggie match.

Or you can opt for the full questionnaire (you should) ... and basically feel very, VERY understood.

I took the full PawsLikeMe quiz, and when I saw the results I was kindof taken aback:


PawsLikeMe GETS ME!

Then I was the whisked away to dogs who are just ready to love me.

Listen. My apartment in NYC doesn't allow dogs. But if it did? I'd be 91% ready to adopt Carli. She's perfect, and I love her. CUE ADELE and her songs of lost opportunities to love!

With all the 80 gajillion personality quizzes out there in the world, this one is hands down THE BEST.

Take it for yourself! You won't regret it.


This article originally appeared on 11.06.15


New baby and a happy dad.


When San Francisco photographer Lisa Robinson was about to have her second child, she was both excited and nervous.

Sure, those are the feelings most moms-to-be experience before giving birth, but Lisa's nerves were tied to something different.

She and her husband already had a 9-year-old son but desperately wanted another baby. They spent years trying to get pregnant again, but after countless failed attempts and two miscarriages, they decided to stop trying.


Of course, that's when Lisa ended up becoming pregnant with her daughter, Anora. Since it was such a miraculous pregnancy, Lisa wanted to do something special to commemorate her daughter's birth.

So she turned to her craft — photography — as a way to both commemorate the special day, and keep herself calm and focused throughout the birthing process.

Normally, Lisa takes portraits and does wedding photography, so she knew the logistics of being her own birth photographer would be a somewhat precarious new adventure — to say the least.

pregnancy, hospital, giving birth, POV

She initially suggested the idea to her husband Alec as a joke.

Photo by Lisa Robinson/Lisa Robinson Photography.

"After some thought," she says, "I figured I would try it out and that it could capture some amazing memories for us and our daughter."

In the end, she says, Alec was supportive and thought it would be great if she could pull it off. Her doctors and nurses were all for Lisa taking pictures, too, especially because it really seemed to help her manage the pain and stress.

In the hospital, she realized it was a lot harder to hold her camera steady than she initially thought it would be.

tocodynamometer, labor, selfies

She had labor shakes but would periodically take pictures between contractions.

Photo by Lisa Robinson/Lisa Robinson Photography.

"Eventually when it was time to push and I was able to take the photos as I was pushing, I focused on my daughter and my husband and not so much the camera," she says.

"I didn't know if I was in focus or capturing everything but it was amazing to do.”

The shots she ended up getting speak for themselves:

nurse, strangers, medical care,

Warm and encouraging smiles from the nurse.

Photo by Lisa Robinson/Lisa Robinson Photography.

experiment, images, capture, document, record

Newborn Anora's first experience with breastfeeding.

Photo by Lisa Robinson/Lisa Robinson Photography.

"Everybody was supportive and kind of surprised that I was able to capture things throughout. I even remember laughing along with them at one point as I was pushing," Lisa recalled.

In the end, Lisa was so glad she went through with her experiment. She got incredible pictures — and it actually did make her labor easier.

Would she recommend every mom-to-be document their birth in this way? Absolutely not. What works for one person may not work at all for another.

However, if you do have a hobby that relaxes you, figuring out how to incorporate it into one of the most stressful moments in your life is a pretty good way to keep yourself calm and focused.

Expecting and love the idea of documenting your own birthing process?

Take some advice from Lisa: "Don't put pressure on yourself to get 'the shot'" she says, "and enjoy the moment as much as you can.”

Lisa's mom took this last one.

grandma, hobby, birthing process

Mom and daughter earned the rest.

Photo via Lisa Robinson/Lisa Robinson Photography.

This article originally appeared on 06.30.16