My reaction to Melania's jacket went viral. It shows just how many people really do care.

I spent $13.98 to buy the domain name IReallyDoCare.com.

It was a spur-of-the-moment decision in response to first lady Melania Trump's decision to wear a jacket with the message "I Really Don't Care. Do U?" printed across the back on her way to visit immigrant children detained at the border. Using that moment to buy a domain name doesn't seem like the most obvious of paths, but the end result of that choice has been incredible.

Melania Trump wearing a jacket that says "I Really Don't Care. Do U?" Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images.


Like millions of Americans, I've been pretty torn up over some of the images coming out of the immigration detention facilities.

Children are screaming, having been ripped from their families. The audio published by ProPublica made me sick to my stomach. I wanted to do something, but what?

"What can I do?" is always one of the first questions I ask when some humanitarian tragedy strikes or is inflicted upon others. Whether it's children being detained at the border, people in Puerto Rico struggling without power, or the citizens of Flint waiting on clean drinking water — I want to help, but often don't immediately know how to do it.

I think a lot of people are like that. Trying to figure out how to make a positive impact can be tricky, having to go through and vet a number of sites before actually taking action. Trying to cut down on that extra work is, in my opinion, one of the most important things activists and people with large platforms can do, and I'm not alone in that thinking.

Last week, while doing that same research to figure out where to send my money, I came across an ActBlue page started by Amanda Litman, who co-founded the organization Run for Something. The page offered a simple way to donate to 14 groups doing work helping families that have been separated. It was great, and I shared it to my Twitter page a number of times.

On June 21, just hours before the first lady's jacket became a hot topic, Litman tweeted a request to her followers.

"Don't let the news mess with your head — the folks working on the border still need your help," she wrote. "Fundraising has slowed down a bit, but I'd like to hit $3 million raised by end of day tomorrow. We're at $2.65m right now. Will you chip in?"

Then came the photos of the now-infamous jacket and my decision to buy the IReallyDoCare.com domain name. Having just seen Litman's call for donations through her page, I directed my domain to simply work as a redirect to her existing site. I tweeted out a hastily made image containing the link in hopes that it'd drive a few thousand additional dollars in donations to the cause. What I got, instead, was an incredibly viral tweet.

Within hours, tens of thousands of people had retweeted my post, and money poured into Litman's fundraiser. As of this writing, the total is up to $2.88 million, meaning that somewhere around $230,000 came in after my post went viral.

My initial reaction to the message on Melania's jacket was to retreat into a shell of cynicism and apathy.

It was the end of the workday, and I was idly messing around with Photoshop, creating jokey variations of the jacket. I made one that read "Let Them Eat Cake," another that said "Michelle Obama's Speech," and of course, "Be Best." There was something sort of cathartic in making those, if only to give myself a little laugh at the end of another bizarre, surreal day in Trump's America. I wasn't outraged or even upset by her jacket. I just found myself feeling apathetic. That's when I bought the domain name.

Here's a GIF I made morphing the original Zara jacket into an "I Really Do Care" jacket. GIF by Parker Molloy, image by Zara.

Not caring is one of the worst things that can happen to us. Apathy allows us to ignore the world's problems instead of using our combined forces to fix them.

I didn't want to feel apathetic; I didn't want to become the human embodiment of that jacket. That's why I made a simple, declarative statement: I really do care, and I'm sure others do as well.

Throwing a few dollars toward buying a short, easy to remember, and topical domain name was a way to show I care (in addition to making donations through the page itself). The website was a quick way for others and myself to channel the creeping feelings of cynicism and apathy into positive action, and it seems to have worked.

"I Really Do Care" works as not only a slogan but as a promise to ourselves and to others.

It's a direct rebuke of the most dangerous thing any of us will face during the Trump administration: apathy. We need to embrace empathy, to care about something beyond ourselves. Vulnerable populations — such as undocumented immigrants, but also people of color, women, LGBTQ people, and more — are going to rely heavily on the rest of us to help weather this storm.

"I really do care" is a way to let them know that we're all in this together and that we'll have each other's backs as we weather this storm.

Want to wear your values? PSA Supply Co., a commerce site launched by our parent company, GOOD Worldwide Inc., has followed Parker's lead by turning her re-design of Melania Trump's jacket into an "I Really Do Care" T-shirt that you can purchase. 100% of the profit will go directly toward United We Dream, the largest youth-led immigrant network in the United States.

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Shopping sustainably is increasingly important given the severity of the climate crisis, but sometimes it's hard to know where to turn. Thankfully, Amazon is making it a little easier to browse thousands of products that have one or more of 19 sustainability certifications that help preserve the natural world.

The online retailer recently announced Climate Pledge Friendly, a program to make it easier for customers to discover and shop for more sustainable products. To determine the sustainability of a product, the program partnered with third-party certifications, including governmental agencies, nonprofits, and independent labs.

With a selection of items spanning grocery, household, fashion, beauty, and personal electronics, you'll be able to shop more sustainably not just for the holiday season, but throughout the year for your essentials, as well.

You can browse all of the Climate Pledge Friendly products here, labeled with an icon and which certification(s) they meet. To get you on your way to shopping more sustainably, we've rounded up eight of our favorite Climate Pledge Friendly-products that will make great gifts all year long.

Amazon

Jack Wolfskin Women's North York Coat

Give the gift of warmth and style with this coat, available in a variety of colors. Sustainability is built into all Jack Wolfskin products and each item comes with a code that lets you trace back to its origins and understand how it was made.

Bluesign: Bluesign products are responsibly manufactured by using safer chemicals and fewer resources, including less energy, in production.


Amazon

Amazon All-new Echo Dot (4th Gen)

For the tech-obsessed. This Alexa smart speaker, which comes in a sleek, compact design, lets you voice control your entertainment and your smart home as well as connect with others.

Reducing CO2: Products with this certification reduce their carbon footprint year after year. Certified by the Carbon Trust.


Amazon

Burt's Bees Family Jammies Matching Holiday Organic Cotton Pajamas

Get into the holiday spirit with these fun matching PJs for the whole family. Perfect for pictures that even Fido can get in on.

Global Organic Textile Standard: This certifies each step of the organic textile supply chain against strict ecological and social standards. Each product with this certification contains 95%-100% organic content.

Amazon

Naturistick 5-Pack Lip Balm Gift Set

With 100% natural ingredients that are gentle on ultra-sensitive lips, this gift is a great gift for the whole family.

Compact by Design (Certified by Amazon): Products with this certification are packaged without excess air and water, which reduces the carbon footprint of shipping and packaging.


Amazon

Arus Women's GOTS Certified Organic Cotton Hooded Full Length Turkish Bathrobe

For those who love to lounge around, this full-length organic cotton bathrobe is the way to go. Available in five different colors, it has comfortable cuffed sleeves, a hood, pockets, and adjustable belt.

Global Organic Textile Standard: This certifies each step of the organic textile supply chain against strict ecological and social standards. Each product with this certification contains 95%-100% organic content.

Amazon

L'Occitane Extra-Gentle Vegetable Based Soap

This luxe soap, made with moisturizing shea butter and scented with verbena, is perfect for the self-care obsessed.

Compact by Design (Certified by Amazon): Products with this certification are packaged without excess air and water, which reduces the carbon footprint of shipping and packaging.

Amazon

Goodthreads Men's Sweater-Knit Fleece Long-Sleeve Bomber

For the fashionable men in your life, this fashion-forward knit bomber is an excellent choice. The sweater material keeps it cozy and warm, while the bomber jacket-cut, zip front, and rib-trim neck make it look elevated.

Recycled Claim Standard 100: Products with this certification use materials made from at least 95% recycled content.

Amazon

All-new Fire TV Stick with Alexa Voice Remote

Make it even easier to access your favorite movies and shows this holiday season. The new Fire TV Stick lets you use your voice to search across apps. Plus it controls the power and volume on your TV, so you'll never need to leave the couch! Except for snacks.

Reducing CO2: Products with this certification reduce their carbon footprint year after year. Certified by the Carbon Trust.

Images via Canva and Unsplash

If there's one thing that everyone can agree on, it's that being in a pandemic sucks.

However, we seem to be on different pages as to what sucks most about it. Many of us are struggling with being separated from our friends and loved ones for so long. Some of us have lost friends and family to the virus, while others are dealing with ongoing health effects of their own illness. Millions are struggling with job loss and financial stress due to businesses being closed. Parents are drowning, dealing with their kids' online schooling and lack of in-person social interactions on top of their own work logistics. Most of us hate wearing masks (even if we do so diligently), and the vast majority of us are just tired of having to think about and deal with everything the pandemic entails.

Much has been made of the mental health impact of the pandemic, which is a good thing. We need to have more open conversations about mental health in general, and with everything so upside down, it's more important now than ever. However, it feels like pandemic mental health conversations have been dominated by people who want to justify anti-lockdown arguments. "We can't let the cure be worse than the disease," people say. Kids' mental health is cited as a reason to open schools, the mental health challenges of financial despair as a reason to keep businesses open, and the mental health impact of social isolation as a reason to ditch social distancing measures.

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If the past year has taught us nothing else, it's that sending love out into the world through selfless acts of kindness can have a positive ripple effect on people and communities. People all over the United States seemed to have gotten the message — 71% of those surveyed by the World Giving Index helped a stranger in need in 2020. A nonprofit survey found 90% helped others by running errands, calling, texting and sending care packages. Many people needed a boost last year in one way or another and obliging good neighbors heeded the call over and over again — and continue to make a positive impact through their actions in this new year.

Upworthy and P&G Good Everyday wanted to help keep kindness going strong, so they partnered up to create the Lead with Love Fund. The fund awards do-gooders in communities around the country with grants to help them continue on with their unique missions. Hundreds of nominations came pouring in and five winners were selected based on three criteria: the impact of action, uniqueness, and "Upworthy-ness" of their story.

Here's a look at the five winners:

Edith Ornelas, co-creator of Mariposas Collective in Memphis, Tenn.

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Gates Foundation

Once upon a time, a scientist named Dr. Andrew Wakefield published in the medical journal The Lancet that he had discovered a link between autism and vaccines.

After years of controversy and making parents mistrust vaccines, along with collecting $674,000 from lawyers who would benefit from suing vaccine makers, it was discovered he had made the whole thing up. The Lancet publicly apologized and reported that further investigation led to the discovery that he had fabricated everything.

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Budweiser beer, and its low-calorie counterpart, Bud Light, have created some of the most memorable Super Bowl commercials of the past 37 years.

There were the Clydesdales playing football and the poor lost puppy who found its way home because of the helpful horses. Then there were the funny frogs who repeated the brand name, "Bud," "Weis," "Er."

We can't forget the "Wassup?!" ad that premiered in December 1999, spawning the most obnoxious catchphrase of the new millennium.

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