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President Biden poses with his 'First Dogs' in a legendary Oval Office photoshoot
via the White House / Flickr

The White House is America's house and it feels a lot more like home these days after the arrival of Champ and Major, President Biden's German Shepherds. There's something about the presence of pets at the White House that gives it a sense of warmth. It also makes the residents of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue seem a lot more human.

Dogs have a special way of connecting us to nature and reminding us what's really important in life, a nice walk, a cuddle, and a rub on the belly.

The White House missed that sense of normalcy in the Trump era. According to an article published by The Atlantic, Trump thinks owning a pet is "low class," so the White House was dogless for four years.


Champ has been with the Biden family for more than a decade after being purchased from a breeder. Major joined the Biden clan in 2018 after they fostered him from the Delaware Humane Association.

via Delaware Humane Association

Major is the second rescue dog to live in the White House. President Biden says a reason why they adopted him was to have a younger dog around the aging Champ to keep him spry. Lyndon Johnson's dog Yuki was a mixed-breed pup abandoned by his owner. Johnson found the dog on the side of a Texas road and gave him a forever home.

President Biden celebrated the two new First Pooches by posing with them for a photoshoot. In the photos posted to Instagram and Flickr Monday, Champ and Major sit regally in the Oval Office while the president smiles at his new desk.



The White House Flickr account recently shared a shot of Champ watching over the proceedings as Biden met with senior advisers on Feb. 9.

via The White House / Flickr

The photos of the dogs in the Oval Office may be a bit of shade directed at Newsmax. Last Friday, the conservative news outlet aired a segment where host Greg Kelly took aim at Biden's dog Champ, making fun of his appearance.

The segment was an embarrassing example of the lengths partisan media will go to criticize the other side. It was also an indication of how well Biden is doing as president. If all you can do is make fun of his dog, he must be doing pretty well.

"Did you see the dog?" Kelly asked, referring to Champ. "Doesn't he look a little, uh, a little rough? I love dogs, but this dog needs a bath and a comb and all kinds of love and care. I've never seen a dog in the White House like this."

Kelly then compared Champ to Buddy, former President Clinton's Labrador retriever, and Millie, former President George H.W. Bush's English springer spaniel.

"I remember Buddy. I remember Millie. I remember lots of dogs but not a dog who seems — I don't know. I don't know how much love and care he is getting," Kelly said.

Champ and Major will be sharing the spotlight with another pet in the coming weeks. Last November, after winning the election, the Bidens announced they would be adding a cat to the first family.

There's no word yet on how the folks at Newsmax plan to take down the First Feline.

Health

A child’s mental health concerns shouldn’t be publicized no matter who their parents are

Even politicians' children deserve privacy during a mental health crisis.

A child's mental health concerns shouldn't be publicized.

Editor's Note: If you are having thoughts about taking your own life, or know of anyone who is in need of help, the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline is a United States-based suicide prevention network of over 200+ crisis centers that provides 24/7 service via a toll-free hotline with the number 9-8-8. It is available to anyone in suicidal crisis or emotional distress.


It's an unspoken rule that children of politicians should be off limits when it comes to public figure status. Kids deserve the ability to simply be kids without the media picking them apart. We saw this during Obama's presidency when people from both ends of the political spectrum come out to defend Malia and Sasha Obama's privacy and again when a reporter made a remark about Barron Trump.

This is even more important when we are talking about a child's mental health, so seeing detailed reports about Ted Cruz's 14-year-old child's private mental health crisis was offputting, to say it kindly. It feels icky for me to even put the senator's name in this article because it feels like adding to this child's exposure.

When a child is struggling with mental health concerns, the instinct should be to cocoon them in safety, not to highlight the details or speculate on the cause. Ever since the news broke about this child's mental health, social media has been abuzz, mostly attacking the parents and speculating if the child is a member of the LGBTQ community.

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People have big feelings about abortion, which is understandable. On one hand, you have people who feel that abortion is a fundamental women's rights issue, that our bodily autonomy is not something you can legislate, and that those who oppose abortion rights are trying to control women through oppressive legislation. On the other, you have folks who believe that a fetus is a human individual first and foremost, that no one has the right to terminate a human life, and that those who support abortion rights are heartless murderers.

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