Rudy Giuliani's smear against sex workers is more common than you think. Let's fix that.

Rudy Giuliani, personal lawyer to President Donald Trump, went off on Stormy Daniels in a recent interview.

Appearing at a summit in Tel Aviv, Israel, on June 6, the former mayor of New York City fielded a question about Daniels by saying she's not a credible person and suggesting she's lying about having had an affair with Trump.

"Because the business you were in entitles you to no degree of giving your credibility any weight," he says, referencing her work as an actress in adult films. "I'm sorry, I don't respect a porn star the way I respect a career woman or a woman of substance or a woman who ... isn't going to sell her body for sexual exploitation."


"I don't respect a porn star the way I respect a career woman or a woman of substance." GIF via AP/YouTube.

Naturally there was some immediate backlash, with people slamming Giuliani's comments as misogynistic and demeaning.

Giuliani doubled down. "If you're involved in a sort of slimy business, (that) says something about you — says something about how far you'll go to make money," he told CNN's Dana Bash. "Our real point about her is that she's not just generally un-credible, she's un-credible from the point of view of wanting to get money. She's a con artist."

On the June 7 edition of "The View," hosts Meghan McCain and Whoopi Goldberg explained exactly what's wrong with saying someone lacks credibility because of a career in sex work.

"A lot of [sex workers] have put their kids through college; they have had incredible lives and gone on to do all kinds of stuff," Goldberg said. "So, the mere fact that you [Giuliani] would make such a blanket statement about someone you don't know, who does something you seemingly know nothing about, seems kind of shocking. ... I feel like you need to grow up. Grow up."

One of the better deconstructions of Giuliani's comments came from porn performer Sydney Leathers.

In a sarcasm-laden blog post for Washington Babylon, Leathers took jabs at Giuliani for talking about women as though we've traveled 50 years into the past.

"A porn star can still be a career woman/woman of substance," Leathers wrote. "To imply otherwise is narrow minded and misogynistic. Rudy and Trump are not men of substance so I'm not sure where they get off judging others on this."

Giuliani's views are, unfortunately, pretty common. But they don't have to be.

Sex work is work. Whether or not a job is "glamorous" or not is beside the point. Imagine applying that standard to any other industry, asking accountants how they can take part in an industry that doesn't have "glamour" or chiding someone for taking a data entry gig "just because they need the money." But misconceptions of sex work — that porn must be bad because it doesn't live up to some arbitrary standard or assuming people involved in the industry are unsuccessful, unsophisticated, and uneducated — are pervasive in our culture.

"It's not only common for people in the sex industry to be underestimated, our deaths are routinely used as punchlines," Leathers says. "Literally right now I'm sitting here watching season 4 episode 1 of 'Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt' and they kill off a stripper for a cheap laugh."

She goes on to list Tina Fey, Amy Schumer, and Patton Oswalt as ostensibly progressive comedians who've used the death of sex workers as punchlines.

"Imagine if these jokes were made about the deaths of any other group of people," Leather says, frustrated. "And we are a group that is killed at an alarmingly high rate, so it's really not a joke, and it's not funny. It's unacceptable."

She adds, "I'm sure some people will read 'sex workers are murdered at alarmingly high rates' and think, 'Wow, women shouldn't get into sex work then!' But maybe men just shouldn't kill us? It's like the 'don't wear a short skirt if you don't want to get raped' argument."

Photo courtesy of Sydney Leathers.

Changing this culture of condescension begins with the media we consume.

"I think the biggest thing people could do [is] stop laughing at those kinds of jokes. Stop retweeting those jokes. And tell the writers of that type of content that it's not funny and it's not OK," Leathers says.

"The View" segment gave her a bit of hope. It was just five years ago that Leathers was one of the women involved in a political scandal people were talking about on TV, and when she made the decision to pursue a career in porn, the reaction was negative.

A few years ago, she notes, that segment wouldn't have happened. "Thomas Roberts called me batshit crazy live on MSNBC for deciding to do porn, and no one said a word," says Leathers. "So there is a cultural shift starting to happen now — even though there has been recent legislation targeting sex work. We just need to keep standing up whenever people are being blatantly disrespectful and damaging."

There's nothing wrong with porn or the people who work in the industry.

Giuliani's statements are sexist and he's using his platform to diminish sex work. We'd also probably be a lot better off if we could stop making "dead hooker" jokes. Easy enough, right?

For more reasons for why porn is actually OK, we've published a whole list.

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Should a man lose his home because the grass in his yard grew higher than 10 inches? The city of Dunedin, Florida seems to think so.

According to the Institute of Justice, which is representing Jim Ficken, he had a very good reason for not mowing his lawn – and tried to rectify the situation as best he could.

In 2014, Jim's mom became ill and he visited her often in South Carolina to help her out. When he was away, his grass grew too long and he was cited by a code office; he cut the grass and wasn't fined.

France has started forcing supermarkets to donate food instead of throwing it away.

But several years later, this one infraction would come back to haunt him after he left to take care of him's mom's affairs after she died. The arrangements he made to have his grass cut fell through (his friend who he asked to help him out passed away unexpectedly) and that set off a chain reaction that may result in him losing his home.

The 69-year-old retiree now faces a $29,833.50 fine plus interest. Watch the video to find out just what Jim is having to deal with.

Mow Your Lawn or Lose Your House! www.youtube.com

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The world officially loves Michelle Obama.

The former first lady has overtaken the number one spot in a poll of the world's most admired women. Conducted by online research firm YouGov, the study uses international polling tools to survey people in countries around the world about who they most admire.

In the men's category, Bill Gates took the top spot, followed by Barack Obama and Jackie Chan.

In the women's category, Michelle Obama came first, followed by Oprah Winfrey and Angelina Jolie. Obama pushed Jolie out of the number one spot she claimed last year.

Unsurprising, really, because what's not to love about Michelle Obama? She is smart, kind, funny, accomplished, a great dancer, a devoted wife and mother, and an all-around, genuinely good person.

She has remained dignified and strong in the face of rabid masses of so-called Americans who spent eight years and beyond insisting that she's a man disguised as a woman. She's endured non-stop racist memes and terrifying threats to her family. She has received far more than her fair share of cruelty, and always takes the high road. She's the one who coined, "When they go low, we go high," after all.

She came from humble beginnings and remains down to earth despite becoming a familiar face around the world. She's not much older than me, but I still want to be like Michelle Obama when I grow up.

Her memoir, Becoming, may end up being the best-selling memoir of all time, having already sold 10 million copies—a clear sign that people can't get enough Michelle, because there's no such thing as too much Michelle.

Don't like Michelle Obama? Don't care. Those of us who love her will fly our MO flags high and without apology, paying no mind to folks with cold, dead hearts who don't know a gem of a human being when they see one. There is nothing any hater can say or do to make us admire this undeniably admirable woman any less.

When it seems like the world has lost its mind—which is how it feels most days these days—I'm just going to keep coming back to this study as evidence that hope for humanity is not lost.

Here. Enjoy some real-life Michelle on Jimmy Kimmel. (GAH. WHY IS SHE SO CUTE AND AWESOME. I can't even handle it.)

Michelle & Barack Obama are Boring Now www.youtube.com

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via EarthFix / Flickr

What will future generations never believe that we tolerated in 2019?

Dolphin and orca captivity, for sure. They'll probably shake their heads at how people died because they couldn't afford healthcare. And, they'll be completely mystified at the amount of food some people waste while others go starving.

According to Biological Diversity, "An estimated 40 percent of the food produced in the United States is wasted every year, costing households, businesses and farms about $218 billion annually."

There are so many things wrong with this.

First of all it's a waste of money for the households who throw out good food. Second, it's a waste of all of the resources that went into growing the food, including the animals who gave their lives for the meal. Third, there's something very wrong with throwing out food when one in eight Americans struggle with hunger.

Supermarkets are just as guilty of this unnecessary waste as consumers. About 10% of all food waste are supermarket products thrown out before they've reached their expiration date.

Three years ago, France took big steps to combat food waste by making a law that bans grocery stores from throwing away edible food.According to the new ordinance, stores can be fined for up to $4,500 for each infraction.

Previously, the French threw out 7.1 million tons of food. Sixty-seven percent of which was tossed by consumers, 15% by restaurants, and 11% by grocery stores.

This has created a network of over 5,000 charities that accept the food from supermarkets and donate them to charity. The law also struck down agreements between supermarkets and manufacturers that prohibited the stores from donating food to charities.

"There was one food manufacturer that was not authorized to donate the sandwiches it made for a particular supermarket brand. But now, we get 30,000 sandwiches a month from them — sandwiches that used to be thrown away," Jacques Bailet, head of the French network of food banks known as Banques Alimentaires, told NPR.

It's expected that similar laws may spread through Europe, but people are a lot less confident at it happening in the United States. The USDA believes that the biggest barrier to such a program would be cost to the charities and or supermarkets.

"The logistics of getting safe, wholesome, edible food from anywhere to people that can use it is really difficult," the organization said according to Gizmodo. "If you're having to set up a really expensive system to recover marginal amounts of food, that's not good for anybody."

Plus, the idea may seem a little too "socialist" for the average American's appetite.

"The French version is quite socialist, but I would say in a great way because you're providing a way where they [supermarkets] have to do the beneficial things not only for the environment, but from an ethical standpoint of getting healthy food to those who need it and minimizing some of the harmful greenhouse gas emissions that come when food ends up in a landfill," Jonathan Bloom, the author of American Wasteland, told NPR.

However, just because something may be socialist doesn't mean it's wrong. The greater wrong is the insane waste of money, damage to the environment, and devastation caused by hunger that can easily be avoided.

Planet

The world is dark and full of terrors, but every once in a while it graces us with something to warm our icy-cold hearts. And that is what we have today, with a single dad who went viral on Twitter after his daughter posted the photos he sent her when trying to pick out and outfit for his date. You love to see it.




After seeing these heartwarming pics, people on Twitter started suggesting this adorable man date their moms. It was essentially a mom and date matchmaking frenzy.

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