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I've been reminded again that black lives don't matter. And I am exhausted.

He was a dad, he was a citizen of this nation, and he deserved better.

I've been reminded again that black lives don't matter. And I am exhausted.

I woke up in tears this morning after watching the details of Alton Sterling's murder on social media all night.

The images played over and over in my head like a broken record: officers slamming Alton against a car, kneeing him in the throat, and shooting him repeatedly. I felt sick.

Sterling is the 558th person killed by the police in the United States in 2016.


Image by Arthur Reed/AP.

Last night and today, I watched the same routine play out. I've seen it so many times before, after police brutality takes another black life. The social media outrage. The Black Lives Matter activists demanding justice. The All Lives Matter mouths countering with ignorance and insensitivity. The frustrating responses from white people who claim to be down with black culture, but who step up only when it's entertaining for them, not when it requires a call to action against discrimination or injustice.

Today, it was too much. I am exhausted by this.

So I cried. I cried, and I breathed heavily, and I sobbed.

And then I looked at photos of my dad and mom. And my brother and sisters. And my aunts and uncles. And my cousins. And my best friends.

They are all at risk when they happen to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. They are all susceptible to the same fate as Alton Sterling if they cross the wrong person or the wrong cop. They are endlessly ignored, swept under the rug, and subjected to injustice.

Then I got angry.

I got angry because the same system that killed Alton Sterling, that holds a threshold of fear of black men and women across this country, killed Emmett Till in 1955 when he had the "audacity" to flirt with a white woman.

The same system killed Tamir Rice while he was playing with a toy gun on a playground.

It killed Sandra Bland, an animal sciences student minding her own business as she was driving down the road.

It killed Michael Brown, an unarmed, recent high school graduate who was ready to start college.

It killed Rekia Boyd because she was talking too loudly for comfort.

It killed Trayvon Martin when he was walking home to eat his recently purchased Skittles.

Memorials for black lives killed by police brutality have become the norm. Michael Kunzelma/AP

Black bodies being brutalized is nothing new in this system.

This brutality has happened for 245 years in every town across this great nation. It happened during the Jim Crow era, when black folks dangled from trees like caricatures.

And it continues to happen. Despite outcry, despite rage, despite calls for change. It continues to happen. And I — along with so many other black people — am hurting. I am tired.

And I am tired of being told that our lives don't matter.

Protestors have been vocal for years. Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images.

I am tired of being told that if I dress a certain way, talk a certain way, or behave in a certain manner, I'll do just fine.

Because all those things? In this system, they aren't true.

They aren't true when police can put an unarmed man in a chokehold and walk away without so much as a slap on the wrist or when they can kill a child on the playground in what is essentially a legalized drive-by shooting.

The Federal Department of Justice has just announced they are opening a civil rights probe into Alton Sterling's shooting.

This is a surprising step in the right direction for a department that usually defends police officers.

But what can we do? We can be sad. We can be tired. And we can be angry.

We can also demand that officers be held accountable when they use unnecessary force. We can continue yelling that Black Lives Matter, even when people retaliate, until our system proves that black lives actually do matter.

A memorial for Alton Sterling. Photo by Gerald Herbert/AP.

And we can remember Alton Sterling. Like the others, we can say his name.

He was 37 years old. He was a father of five. He was loved by those who knew him.

Say Alton Sterling's name and say the names of all of the black people who have fallen victim to police brutality: Mike Brown. Trayvon Martin. Rekia Boyd. Sandra Bland. Tamir Rice. Eric Garner. Tanisha Anderson. Freddie Gray. Tony Robinson. Walter Scott. And so many more.

And please don't stop saying them until black people get the justice we have always deserved.

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After years of service as a military nurse in the naval Marine Corps, Los Angeles, California-resident Rhonda Jackson became one of the 37,000 retired veterans in the U.S. who are currently experiencing homelessness — roughly eight percent of the entire homeless population.

"I was living in a one-bedroom apartment with no heat for two years," Jackson said. "The Department of Veterans Affairs was doing everything they could to help but I was not in a good situation."

One day in 2019, Jackson felt a sudden sense of hope for a better living arrangement when she caught wind of the ongoing construction of Veteran's Village in Carson, California — a 51-unit affordable housing development with one, two and three-bedroom apartments and supportive services to residents through a partnership with U.S.VETS.

Her feelings of hope quickly blossomed into a vision for her future when she learned that Veteran's Village was taking applications for residents to move in later that year after construction was complete.

"I was entered into a lottery and I just said to myself, 'Okay, this is going to work out,'" Jackson said. "The next thing I knew, I had won the lottery — in more ways than one."

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The Hill/Twitter

It was a mere three weeks ago that President Biden announced that the U.S. would have enough vaccine supply to cover every adult American by the end of July. At the time, that was good news.

Today, he's bumped up that date by two full months.

That's great news.

In his announcement to the nation, Biden outlined the updated process for getting the country immunized against COVID-19.


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We're redefining what normal means in these uncertain times, and although this is different for all of us, love continues to transform us for the better.

Love is what united Marie-Claire and David Archbold, who met while taking a photography class. "We went into the darkroom to see what developed," they joke—and after a decade of marriage, they know firsthand the deep commitment and connection romantic love requires.

All photos courtesy of Marie-Claire and David Archbold

However, their relationship became even sweeter when they adopted James: a little boy with a huge heart.

In the United States alone, there are roughly 122,000 children awaiting adoption according to the latest report from the U.S Department of Health and Human Services. While the goal is always for a child to be parented by and stay with their biological family, that is not always a possibility. This is where adoption offers hope—not only does it create new families, it gives birth parents an avenue through which to see their child flourish when they are not able to parent. For the right families, it's a beautiful thing.

The Archbolds knew early on that adoption was an option for them. David has three daughters from a previous marriage, but knowing their family was not yet complete, the couple embarked on a two-year journey to find their match. When the adoption agency called and told them about James, they were elated. From the moment they met him, the Archbolds knew he was meant to be part of their family. David locked eyes with the brown-eyed baby and they stared at each other in quiet wonder for such a long time that the whole room fell silent. "He still looks at me like that," said David.

The connection was mutual and instantaneous—love at first sight. The Archbolds knew that James was meant to be a part of their family. However, they faced significant challenges requiring an even deeper level of commitment due to James' medical condition.

James was born with congenital hyperinsulinism, a rare condition that causes his body to overproduce insulin, and within 2 months of his birth, he had to have surgery to remove 90% of his pancreas. There was a steep learning curve for the Archbolds, but they were already in love, and knew they were committed to the ongoing care that'd be required of bringing James into their lives. After lots of research and encouragement from James' medical team, they finally brought their son home.

Today, three-year-old James is thriving, filled with infectious joy that bubbles over and touches every person who comes in contact with him. "Part of love is when people recognize that they need to be with each other," said his adoptive grandfather. And because the Archbolds opted for an open adoption, there are even more people to love and support James as he grows.

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You know that feeling you get when you walk into a classroom and see someone else's stuff on your desk?

OK, sure, there are no assigned seats, but you've been sitting at the same desk since the first day and everyone knows it.

So why does the guy who sits next to you put his phone, his book, his charger, his lunch, and his laptop in the space that's rightfully yours? It's annoying!

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via ABC News

Julia Tinetti, 31, and Cassandra Madison, 32, first met in 2013 while working at The Russian Lady, a bar in New Haven, Connecticut, and the two immediately hit it off.

"We started hanging out together. We went out for drinks, dinner," Julia told "Good Morning America." "I thought she was cool. We hit it off right away," added Cassandra

The two also shared a strong physical resemblance and matching tattoos of the flag of the Dominican Republic. They had a bond that was so unique, even their coworkers thought there must be something more happening.

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