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Systemic racism is real. 4 simple facts prove it.

Some simple facts to enlighten your day.

voter rights, systemic racism, prison demographics, democracy
Image created from Pixabay.

Going to jail eliminated your democratic right to vote.

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Open Society Foundations

Systemic racism: What is it?

You've probably heard the term "systemic racism," but what does it really mean?

In the video linked below, Jay Smooth illustrates it with four simple facts that show how one huge discriminatory problem results in keeping a lot of black men from their democratic right to vote.


Let's examine some statistics about our prison population.

Out of 100,000 Americans, about 700 are incarcerated — that is, in prison or jail.

But out of 100,000 black men, about 4,000 are in jail or prison.

That's more than four times the average.

Pretty shocking, eh?

But y'know what usually happens when you go to prison? You're not allowed to vote.

What he's saying here is this: Many people lose their right to vote by virtue of either being in prison or having their voting rights removed because that's what happens in almost all states* when you're a convicted felon. (*Except Maine and Vermont: Way to go!)

But, because a disproportionate amount of black men get jailed, a disproportionate amount of black men get barred from participating in one of our society's important democratic processes.

This is a big problem. According to The Sentencing Project, 13% of all black men are denied the right to vote.

If you can't vote, you can't participate in our society — and that makes for a systemic problem.

When huge societal organization (such as our prison system) ends up systematically giving disadvantages to a racial group — that's systemic racism.

Here's the video all about it:

A nasty note gets a strong response.

We've all seen it while cruising for spots in a busy parking lot: A person parks their whip in a disabled spot, then they walk out of their car and look totally fine. It's enough to make you want to vomit out of anger, especially because you've been driving around for what feels like a million years trying to find a parking spot.

You're obviously not going to confront them about it because that's all sorts of uncomfortable, so you think of a better, way less ballsy approach: leaving a passive aggressive note on their car's windshield.

Satisfied, you walk back to your car feeling proud of yourself for telling that liar off and even more satisfied as you walk the additional 100 steps to get to the store from your lame parking spot all the way at the back of the lot. But did you ever stop and wonder if you told off the wrong person?

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Pets

Dog marionette freaks out real dogs with wholly believable dog movements

Can't blame pups for thinking he's real because this puppetry is WOW.

Representative image by Eric Masur on Unsplash

A dog marionette in the right puppeteer's hands can be very convincing.

Humans have enjoyed the art of puppetry since ancient times, and like all arts, puppeteering has become more and more refined over the centuries. To see that evolution in action, look no further than the incredible skills of Polish puppeteer Lukasz Puczko.

Puczko's ability to mimic a dog's movements with with his dog marionette, Burek, is so impressive even real dogs are duped. In a TikTok video that's been viewed nearly 20 million times, Puczko is seen on a crowded street at an arts festival with Burek as he pounces around, wags his tail, lifts his ears and crouches into a playful stance just like a real dog would.

And it's so convincing, his real doggy counterpart doesn't seem to know what to do.

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Pop Culture

Here’s a paycheck for a McDonald’s worker. And here's my jaw dropping to the floor.

So we've all heard the numbers, but what does that mean in reality? Here's one year's wages — yes, *full-time* wages. Woo.

Making a little over 10,000 for a yearly salary.


I've written tons of things about minimum wage, backed up by fact-checkers and economists and scholarly studies. All of them point to raising the minimum wage as a solution to lifting people out of poverty and getting folks off of public assistance. It's slowly happening, and there's much more to be done.

But when it comes right down to it, where the rubber meets the road is what it means for everyday workers who have to live with those wages. I honestly don't know how they do it.

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Kristen Wiig and Bill Hader on "Saturday Night Live" in 2010.

It must be incredibly hard to do live TV comedy sketches and never break character, especially when you’re working alongside some of the funniest people on the planet. Every “Saturday Night Live” cast member has had their moment where the sketch was too funny and they lost control, but few had it happen more times than Bill Hader, who starred on the show from 2005 to 2013.

One of Hader’s most popular characters on SNL was Stefon, the New York City nightlife reporter. Multiple times during the sketch, he had to cover his face to prevent the audience from seeing him laughing.

But one of the most obvious character breaks Hader ever had was in 2010, on season 36 of the show, during a “Hollywood Dish” sketch where he and Kirsten Wiig played entertainment reporters. The guest on this episode was Scarlett Johannson.

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Mom risks life to fight off daughter's attempted kidnapper

We have all wondered what we might do in certain situations that seem to take super human courage. While many people like to assume they''d have the wherewithal to do what needed to be done in a dramatic situation, thankfully most won't need to find out. But for the ones that do, it seems there's not much thinking involved. Just adrenaline and instinct to protect.

Adriana Alvarez, a mom to an adult daughter found herself acting on pure mama bear instincts when her adult daughter was almost a victim of kidnapping. Her 18-year-old daughter, Lex, was just about to enter the home after walking the dog when a man wearing a surgical mask jumped the railing grabbed her and carried her away.

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Family

5-year-old gave his mom advice for handling nerves. It was both adorable and spot-on.

"You say, ‘I am brave of this meeting!’, ‘I am loved!’, ‘I smell good!"

Kids really do say the darnedest things.

Any parent knows that kids can be surprisingly astute little philosophers at the most unexpected times. One minute your child is throwing a tantrum because you sliced their sandwich wrong, and the next they are blowing you away with their deep preschool thoughts. It's enough to give you whiplash, but it's also one of the most fun things about being around kids. You never know what they're going to say and sometimes what they say is just awesome.

Case in point: This 5-year-old who gave his mom some sage advice about handling her nerves.

Twitter user @Eprecipice (StressieBessie) shared the story in a tweet thread. She wrote:

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