Parkland students and gun owners got into a heated debate that ended in tears and hugs.
Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images.

Some of the March for Our Lives student activists have been traveling across several cities as part of their #RoadToChange tour, which is focused on getting people to vote in the 2018 midterm elections and support gun safety measures.

At a stop in Dallas on July 7, they were speaking to students at Paul Quinn College.


The Parkland activists were well received by the students attending the town hall, but a number of armed protesters showed up outside the venue.

It was an understandably tense moment. After all, these students were only recently removed from the tragic mass shooting at their high school in February 2018 that killed 17 people and thrust them into the national spotlight.

However, some of the Parkland students, including David Hogg, decided to step outside and directly engage with the protesters.

"The reason we’re here today isn’t to take anybody’s guns away. It's to listen," Hogg said.

When people saw Hogg and a gun owner discussing their perceived differences, a small but powerful breakthrough happened.

The two sides talked through their disagreements, and the conversation ended with some tears and lots of hugs.

Fellow Parkland survivor Matt Deitsch chronicled the exchange on Twitter, noting that after one of the protesters began talking with Hogg, a few others approached and joined what turned into a 90-minute conversation.

Image via Matt Deitsch/Twitter.

Image via Matt Deitsch/Twitter.

There was plenty of debate, but even in discussing one of America's most intense, partisan issues, the two sides found common ground.

Image via Matt Deitsch/Twitter.

"This is the most American thing I've ever done," Deitsch noted one protester said. "Thank you so much for helping us understand."

The gun debate remains contentious, but an overwhelming number of Americans actually agree on commonsense reforms.

Talking about those areas and cutting through the noise can lead to real progress.

As Hogg himself said on Twitter after his dialogue with the protesters, "Be open to conversation with those who don't agree [with] because you might learn something."

The Parkland students continue to lead the way on sensible gun reform. While many want to portray each side of debate as extreme, there's nothing controversial about saving lives and keeping people safe. What might be most shocking is how much we have to agree on when we get together and talk about it face-to-face.

True

Anne Hebert, a marketing writer living in Austin, TX, jokes that her closest friends think that her hobby is "low-key harassment for social good". She authors a website devoted entirely to People Doing Good Things. She's hosted a yearly canned food drive with up to 150 people stopping by to donate, resulting in hundreds of pounds of donations to take to the food bank for the past decade.

"I try to share info in a positive way that gives people hope and makes them aware of solutions or things they can do to try to make the world a little better," she said.

For now, she's encouraging people through a barrage of persistent, informative, and entertaining emails with one goal in mind: getting people to VOTE. The thing about emailing people and talking about politics, according to Hebert, is to catch their attention—which is how lice got involved.

"When my kids were in elementary school, I was class parent for a year, which meant I had to send the emails to the other parents. As I've learned over the years, a good intro will trick your audience into reading the rest of the email. In fact, another parent told me that my emails always stood out, especially the one that started: 'We need volunteers for the Valentine's Party...oh, and LICE.'"

Hebert isn't working with a specific organization. She is simply trying to motivate others to find ways to plug in to help get out the vote.

Photo by Phillip Goldsberry on Unsplash

Keep Reading Show less
via Emily Sophie / TikTok

A TikTok video is making the rounds because it continues to make people question their own senses. In the video, a voice can be heard saying either the word "brainstorm" or the words "green needle."

What you hear depends on what you're thinking about when you read the screen.

So, if you play it while thinking "green needle," that's what you'll hear in the clip. The same goes for "brainstorm." Then, go back and forth between the two. It's a surreal experience.

Keep Reading Show less
Photo by Tim Mossholder on Unsplash
True

Glenda moved to Houston from Ohio just before the pandemic hit. She didn't know that COVID-19-related delays would make it difficult to get her Texas driver's license and apply for unemployment benefits. She quickly found herself in an impossible situation — stranded in a strange place without money for food, gas, or a job to provide what she needed.

Alone, hungry, and scared, Glenda dialed 2-1-1 for help. The person on the other end of the line directed her to the Houston-based nonprofit Bread of Life, founded by St. John's United Methodist pastors Rudy and Juanita Rasmus.

For nearly 30 years, Bread of Life has been at the forefront of HIV/AIDS prevention, eliminating food insecurity, providing permanent housing to formerly homeless individuals and disaster relief.

Glenda sat in her car for 20 minutes outside of the building, trying to muster up the courage to get out and ask for help. She'd never been in this situation before, and she was terrified.

When she finally got out, she encountered Eva Thibaudeau, who happened to be walking down the street at the exact same time. Thibaudeau is the CEO of Temenos CDC, a nonprofit multi-unit housing development also founded by the Rasmuses, with a mission to serve Midtown Houston's homeless population.

Keep Reading Show less
via Jody Danielle Fisher / Facebook

Breast milk is an incredibly magical food. The wonderful thing is that it's produced by a collaboration between mother and baby.

British mother Jody Danielle Fisher shared the miracle of this collaboration on Facebook recently after having her 13-month-old child vaccinated.

In the post, she compared the color of her breast milk before and after the vaccination, to show how a baby's reaction to the vaccine has a direct effect on her mother's milk production.

Keep Reading Show less

As someone who has given birth to three children and who was raised by a labor-and-delivery nurse, you'd think I'd have a good handle on the physical mechanics of childbirth. But despite knowing all the terminology and experiencing all the details first hand—uterine contractions, cervical dilation, etc.—I'm a visual person, and most of the birth process happens internally. Feeling it and being told what's happening isn't the same as being able to visualize what's actually happening.

Enter high school teacher Brooke Bernal, who teaches consumer sciences. She shared a video on TikTok demonstrating how she teaches her students about childbirth, which she says is her "all time favorite lesson," using a balloon and a ping-pong ball. It's a simple, but-oh-so-helpful demonstration that even helped me get a better grip on the miracle of childbirth. (Without the baby shooting across the room at the end, of course.)

Keep Reading Show less