Rachel Maddow breaks down in tears while trying to read latest family separation news.

MSNBC's Rachel Maddow normally shows her human side with informed outrage or her witty sense of humor.

But the normally stoic news host had to break away during her most recent show while talking about the family separation policy.

At the end of her June 19 show, Maddow was just like any number of countless people responding with a gut check to the heartbreaking news that "babies and other young children" are reportedly being separated from their parents and taken to so-called "tender care" facilities in Texas after their families were detained while attempting to cross the border from Mexico into the U.S.


Image via MSNBC/YouTube.

"This is incredible," Maddow said at the start of her report before trailing off for a few seconds. "Trump administration officials have been sending babies and other children—" she began again before she audibly got a lump in her throat as the emotional impact of what she was reading hit her.

"Hold on," she said, waving a finger to the camera as she tried to compose herself before being overwhelmed with emotion.

After a few more tries of reading the breaking news, a visibly shaken Maddow simply couldn't get the words out, saying, "Think I'm going to have to hand this off." The screen cut to her colleague Lawrence O'Donnell, who himself look surprised and moved by her reaction.

Maddow's reaction captured the pain, shock, and disbelief so many are feeling as more and more details about Trump's "zero tolerance" immigration policy emerge.

Shortly after her show aired, Maddow jumped onto Twitter where she addressed the moment in a series of tweets, apologizing repeatedly and posting the full text of the report she had been trying to read.

But many Twitter users, rather than be offended in any way, were quick to respond with love and support, telling her things like "you rock" and reminding her to "never apologize for showing your humanity."

And it's true — Maddow didn't need to apologize for having human reactions while attempting to process tragic events in real time. Other famous figures like Walter Cronkite and President Barack Obama have had similar moments where their typically stoic demeanor cracked. It's a sign of humanity, not weakness.

Journalists are here to inform us, but they're also human beings. And sometimes their honest reactions are part of the story.

This wasn't a performance or a grab at views. Maddow was hit by the very real weight of what's happening at the southern border of her country — our country. The steady stream of heartbreaking news is shocking and painful. It's appropriate for even the most composed media personalities to struggle while reconciling that, on live television no less.

Maddow's break is evidence that the news of what's happening reaches far beyond partisan politics or views on immigration and into the realm of universal human outrage over an undeniable tragedy.

Facts are great. But when the facts are horrific, sometimes unfiltered reaction is the truest delivery of the news.

More
Courtesy of Houseplant.

In America, one dumb mistake can hang over your head forever.

Nearly 30% of the American adult population — about 70 million people — have at least one criminal conviction that can prevent them from being treated equally when it comes to everything from job and housing opportunities to child custody.

Twenty million of these Americans have felony convictions that can destroy their chances of making a comfortable living and prevents them from voting out the lawmakers who imprisoned them.

Many of these convictions are drug-related and stem from the War on Drugs that began in the U.S. '80s. This war has unfairly targeted the minority community, especially African-Americans.

Keep Reading Show less
Culture

Climate change is happening because the earth is warming at an accelerated rate, a significant portion of that acceleration is due to human activity, and not taking measures to mitigate it will have disastrous consequences for life as we know it.

In other words: Earth is heating up, it's kinda our fault, and if we don't fix it, we're screwed.

This is the consensus of the vast majority of the world's scientists who study such things for a living. Case closed. End of story.

How do we know this to be true? Because pretty much every reputable scientific organization on the planet has examined and endorsed these conclusions. Thousands of climate studies have been done, and multiple peer-reviewed studies have been done on those studies, showing that somewhere between 84 and 97 percent of active climate science experts support these conclusions. In fact, the majority of those studies put the consensus well above 90%.

Keep Reading Show less
Nature
via James Anderson

Two years ago, a tweet featuring the invoice for a fixed boiler went viral because the customer, a 91-year-old woman with leukemia, received the services for free.

"No charge for this lady under any circumstances," the invoice read. "We will be available 24 hours to help her and keep her as comfortable as possible."

The repair was done by James Anderson, 52, a father-of-five from Burnley, England. "James is an absolute star, it was overwhelming to see that it cost nothing," the woman's daughter told CNN.

Keep Reading Show less
Heroes

I live in a family with various food intolerances. Thankfully, none of them are super serious, but we are familiar with the challenges of finding alternatives to certain foods, constantly checking labels, and asking restaurants about their ingredients.

In our family, if someone accidentally eats something they shouldn't, it's mainly a bit of inconvenient discomfort. For those with truly life-threatening food allergies, the stakes are much higher.

I can't imagine the ongoing stress of deadly allergy, especially for parents trying to keep their little ones safe.

Keep Reading Show less
popular