Poet Natalie Patterson wants us to vote for hope, and not just in some gimmicky way. She wants us to literally put our tax dollars where our values are and stop wasting money and lives on an unforgiving criminal justice system.

Take, for example, that almost half of federal prisoners have been locked up for drug offenses (see chart below). With so many cops distracted by petty drug busts, some really effed-up crimes — I'm talking rape and murder, people! — are going unsolved.


Wouldn't police attention be better spent tracking violent criminals? And wouldn't we get a lot more for our tax money by investing in ways to stop crime before it happens?

U.S. Federal Prison Population by Offense Category

Note: Data is limited by the availability of offense-specific information.

(Data as of Aug. 30, 2014)

Proposition 47 would be a great first step toward fixing our ironically termed "correctional" system, starting with California. And while it's only up for a vote in California, its passage could be the start of a nationwide shift in a better direction.

Natalie isn't the only one who supports the proposition. The plan has support from millions of California residents, including judges, cops, teachers, parents, students, faith leaders, business owners, and folks from all other walks of life.

Even California's most-read newspapers want 47 to succeed.

So if you're a California voter and you agree with Natalie, please go to the polls on Nov. 4 and vote YES on Proposition 47.

If you're not a California voter, please help to spread the word, because...

"Justice is indivisible! Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere."
— Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Joy

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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Alberto Cartuccia Cingolani wows audiences with his amazing musical talents.

Mozart was known for his musical talent at a young age, playing the harpsichord at age 4 and writing original compositions at age 5. So perhaps it's fitting that a video of 5-year-old piano prodigy Alberto Cartuccia Cingolani playing Mozart has gone viral as people marvel at his musical abilities.

Alberto's legs can't even reach the pedals, but that doesn't stop his little hands from flying expertly over the keys as incredible music pours out of the piano at the 10th International Musical Competition "Città di Penne" in Italy. Even if you've seen young musicians play impressively, it's hard not to have your jaw drop at this one. Sometimes a kid comes along who just clearly has a gift.

Of course, that gift has been helped along by two professional musician parents. But no amount of teaching can create an ability like this.

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TikTok about '80s childhood is a total Gen X flashback.

As a Gen X parent, it's weird to try to describe my childhood to my kids. We're the generation that didn't grow up with the internet or cell phones, yet are raising kids who have never known a world without them. That difference alone is enough to make our 1980s childhoods feel like a completely different planet, but there are other differences too that often get overlooked.

How do you explain the transition from the brown and orange aesthetic of the '70s to the dusty rose and forest green carpeting of the '80s if you didn't experience it? When I tell my kids there were smoking sections in restaurants and airplanes and ashtrays everywhere, they look horrified (and rightfully so—what were we thinking?!). The fact that we went places with our friends with no quick way to get ahold of our parents? Unbelievable.

One day I described the process of listening to the radio, waiting for my favorite song to come on so I could record it on my tape recorder, and how mad I would get when the deejay talked through the intro of the song until the lyrics started. My Spotify-spoiled kids didn't even understand half of the words I said.

And '80s hair? With the feathered bangs and the terrible perms and the crunchy hair spray? What, why and how?

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