What do Chris Rock, Louis C.K., and Barack Obama have in common? They're all teaming up to support a new Heads Up initiative to make community college free.

Student loans are a drag. But the White House wants to lighten the load for future graduates by making two years at their local community college free. That's right. They want to give them a chance to graduate with a total bill of $0.00.


A future convo between Obama and aspiring community college students. GIF from "Bridesmaids."


Why #FreeCommunityCollege? It'll help more people gain access to a college education.

Community college lets folks who don't fit the picture of the "typical" college student have a chance at higher education. Right now, one-third of community college students are the first in their family to attend college. These students also tend to be older, with an average age of 28. Community colleges are cheaper and have more flexibility in course times, which has long made them attractive options for adults who are juggling a lot, like single parents or military veterans.

More first-generation college students, single parents, and veterans with associate degrees means more Americans who will have a fighting chance to get the jobs they want and the wages they deserve.

Mo' jobs + mo' money + less debt = everybody wins!

This doesn't solve the student loan debt problem, but it's certainly a start.

With American college graduates heading into the "real world" with an average of $28,000 in student loan debt, this is just the tip of the iceberg. It won't fix the problem (uh, I don't even want to tell you how much student loan debt I have), but giving more students the chance to graduate with less debt is something I can get behind.

Watch the video below and then visit HeadsUpAmerica.us to learn more and join the movement:

This article originally appeared on November 11, 2015


Remember those beloved Richard Scarry books from when you were a kid?

Like a lot of people, I grew up reading them. And now, I read them to my kids.

The best!

If that doesn't ring a bell, perhaps this character from the "Busytown" series will. Classic!

Image via

Scarry was an incredibly prolific children's author and illustrator. He created over 250 books during his career. His books were loved across the world — over 100 million were sold in many languages.

But here's something you may not have known about these classics: They've been slowly changing over the years.

Don't panic! They've been changing in a good way.

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Photo by Maxim Hopman on Unsplash

The Sam Vimes "Boots" Theory of Socioeconomic Unfairness explains one way the rich get richer.

Any time conversations about wealth and poverty come up, people inevitably start talking about boots.

The standard phrase that comes up is "pull yourself up by your bootstraps," which is usually shorthand for "work harder and don't ask for or expect help." (The fact that the phrase was originally used sarcastically because pulling oneself up by one's bootstraps is literally, physically impossible is rarely acknowledged, but c'est la vie.) The idea that people who build wealth do so because they individually work harder than poor people is baked into the American consciousness and wrapped up in the ideal of the American dream.

A different take on boots and building wealth, however, paints a more accurate picture of what it takes to get out of poverty.

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"Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs" (1937) and actor Peter Dinklage.

On Tuesday, Upworthy reported that actor Peter Dinklage was unhappy with Disney’s decision to move forward with a live-action version of “Snow White and the Seven Drawfs” starring Rachel Zegler.

Dinklage praised Disney’s inclusive casting of the “West Side Story” actress, whose mother is of Colombian descent, but pointed out that, at the same time, the company was making a film that promotes damaging stereotypes about people with dwarfism.

"There's a lot of hypocrisy going on, I've gotta say, from being somebody who's a little bit unique," Dinklage told Marc Maron on his “WTF” podcast.

"Well, you know, it's really progressive to cast a—literally no offense to anybody, but I was a little taken aback by, they were very proud to cast a Latino actress as Snow White," Dinklage said, "but you're still telling the story of 'Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.' Take a step back and look at what you're doing there.”

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