One teacher's Facebook post describes what she saw Baltimore cops doing before the riots broke out.

By now, you probably know about the riots in Baltimore.

The vast majority of residents, angered by the still-unexplained death of Freddie Gray, engaged in peaceful protests. But some clashed violently with police.

If you were reading the official police account, you might think that this all started when a bunch of hulking brute maniacs armed with bricks and rocks just came out of, like, freaking nowhere and started gleefully attacking police officers who were minding their own business.





But these tweets leave out a big part of the story.

Many of the original "rioters" and "looters" weren't hulking brute maniacs. They were kids. And they were just getting out of school when the violence began.

Baltimore schools don't have yellow buses. Most kids ride home on public transit. And according to one woman, a teacher in Baltimore who was on the scene, the mayhem began when cops started pulling kids off of buses as they were trying to make their way home.


Now obviously, this is just what one woman saw.

But the point is this.

If you've got a bunch of stressed out teenagers full of...

And...

And...

...taking away their ride home and meeting them in the street like this...

...is not exactly a recipe for success.

Numerous studies have found that the presence of heavily armed police in angry crowds can aggravate the situation, rather than de-escalate it. That's what we saw play out in Ferguson, Missouri. And there's a strong possibly that's what we're seeing play out now in Baltimore.

Now, obviously no one should attack police officers. But police officers are professionals. If they can't calm down a bunch of teenagers without letting it escalate into chaos, then there's probably something wrong with the way they're doing their jobs.

As one Baltimore resident astutely put it:


It's a really good question.

Albert Einstein

One of the strangest things about being human is that people of lesser intelligence tend to overestimate how smart they are and people who are highly intelligent tend to underestimate how smart they are.

This is called the Dunning-Kruger effect and it’s proven every time you log onto Facebook and see someone from high school who thinks they know more about vaccines than a doctor.

The interesting thing is that even though people are poor judges of their own smarts, we’ve evolved to be pretty good at judging the intelligence of others.

“Such findings imply that, in order to be adaptive, first impressions of personality or social characteristics should be accurate,” a study published in the journal Intelligence says. “There is accumulating evidence that this is indeed the case—at least to some extent—for traits such as intelligence extraversion, conscientiousness, openness, and narcissism, and even for characteristics such as sexual orientation, political ideology, or antigay prejudice.”

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'Merry Christmas' on YouTube.

The world must have been—mostly—good this year. Because Elton John and Ed Sheeran have teamed up to gift us all with a brand new Christmas single.

The song, aptly named “Merry Christmas,” is a perfect blend of silly and sweet that’s cheery, bright and just a touch bizarre.

Created with the holiday spirit in every way, it has whimsical snowball fights, snow angels (basically all the snow things), festive sweaters, iconic throwbacks and twinkling lights galore. Plus all profits from the tune are dedicated to two charities: the Ed Sheeran Suffolk Music Foundation and the Elton John AIDS Foundation.

I personally don’t know which is more of a highlight: Ed Sheeran channeling his inner-Mariah, performing a faux sexy dance in a leg revealing Santa outfit, or him flying through the air with a giant Frosty the Snowman … who seems to be sporting glasses similar to Elton’s. Are we meant to believe that Elton is the Snowman? This music video even has mystery.
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