Taylor Swift’s comments on politics have already had a historic impact.

On Sunday, Taylor Swift made an incredibly rare foray into politics, endorsing two Democratic candidates in her home state of Tennessee.

More importantly, she made an impassioned plea to young people -- urging them to register to vote -- no matter which candidates they are supporting, writing on her Instagram page: “So many intelligent, thoughtful, self-possessed people have turned 18 in the past two years and now have the right and privilege to make their vote count.”

Celebrity endorsements are nothing new and they rarely have a measurable impact outside of coverage by the media and reactions on social media.


But in the case of Taylor Swift, the evidence suggests that in less than 48 hours, she has already had a historic impact on voter registration by sending her message to her more than 112 million fans.

The website vote.org shared information with Upworthy showing that more than 200,000 people had registered to vote since her post on Sunday.

As vote.org makes clear, it’s impossible to know just how many newly registered voters are coming directly from Taylor Shift but there is a direct, measurable spike in registrations since her Instagram post was first published and quickly went viral.

As they noted in a statement: “For a point of reference, we had 78,503 voters register on National Voter Registration Day. As of 11 am ET on 10/9 (about 48 hours after Taylor’s post) we’ve had 240,000 people register and counting.”

First, here’s a breakdown of the spike in voter registrations since Swift’s post on Sunday up through 2pm ET Tuesday, October 9:

  • 18-24    90,720 (+27.9% since 12 pm ET today)
  • 25-29    40,441 (+26.3%)
  • 30-39    37,374 (+26.0%)
  • 40-49    16,333 (+23.9%)
  • 50-59    12,315 (+21.5%)
  • 60-69    8, 582 (+20.0%)
  • 70+       4,017 (+19.0%)
  • Under 18: 3,089 (+20.1%)
  • TOTAL: 212,871

(Via vote.org)

“While there are several factors contributing this, a large majority of new registrations since Taylor’s post on Sunday have been from people between 18-29 years old -- about 102,000 out of the 240,00 total new registrations in less than 48-hours,” reads a statement from Vote.org.

In just over one week, October registrations have already surpassed all of those for September, which itself was by far the largest month of the year so far:

2018 Registrations Nationwide (by month)

  • January: 12,846
  • Feb: 17,722
  • Mar: 14,599
  • Apr: 16,350
  • May: 24,795
  • June: 27,827
  • July: 49,030
  • Aug: 56,669
  • Sept: 190,178
  • October to date: 240,329 (as of 2pm ET on 10/9)

(Via vote.org)

The numbers in Swift’s home state of Tennessee also saw a massive spike, offering further evidence of just how much her call for voter registration had a direct, measurable impact:

2018 Registrations in Tennessee (by month)

  • Jan: 341
  • Feb 306
  • Mar: 504
  • Apr: 564
  • May: 309
  • Jun: 738
  • July: 1405
  • Aug: 951
  • Sept: 2,811
  • Oct to date: 7,554

(Via vote.org)

What’s maybe most impressive is that these numbers are still continuing to climb. Don’t be surprised if Swift makes another statement on this year’s midterm elections before November.

After all, with one simple Instagram post she’s already made voting history.

Motherhood is a journey unlike any other, and one that is nearly impossible to prepare for. No matter how many parenting books you read, how many people you talk to, how many articles you peruse before having kids, your children will emerge as completely unique creatures who impact your world in ways you could never have anticipated.

Those of us who have been parenting for a while have some wisdom to share from experience. Not that older moms know everything, of course, but hindsight can offer some perspective that's hard to find when you're in the thick of early motherhood.

Upworthy asked our readers who are moms what they wish they could tell their younger selves about motherhood, and the responses were both honest and wholesome. Here's what they said:

Lighten up. Don't sweat the small stuff.

One of the most common responses was to stop worrying about the little things so much, try to be present with your kids, and enjoy the time you have with them:

"Relax and enjoy them. If your house is a mess, so be it. Stay in the moment as they are temporary..more so than you think, sometimes. We lost our beautiful boy to cancer 15+yrs ago. I loved him more than life itself..💔 "- Janet

"Don't worry about the dishes, laundry and other chores. Read the kids another book. Go outside and make a mud pie. Throw the baseball around a little longer. Color another picture. Take more pictures and make sure you are in the pictures too! My babies are 19 and 17 and I would give anything to relive an ordinary Saturday from 15 years ago." - Emma H.

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Photo by Daniel Schludi on Unsplash
True

The global eradication of smallpox in 1980 is one of international public health's greatest successes. But in 1966, seven years after the World Health Organization announced a plan to rid the world of the disease, smallpox was still widespread. The culprits? A lack of funds, personnel and vaccine supply.

Meanwhile, outbreaks across South America, Africa, and Asia continued, as the highly contagious virus continued to kill three out of every 10 people who caught it, while leaving many survivors disfigured. It took a renewed commitment of resources from wealthy nations to fulfill the promise made in 1959.

Forty-one years later, although we face a different virus, the potential for vast destruction is just as great, and the challenges of funding, personnel and supply are still with us, along with last-mile distribution. Today, while 30% of the U.S. population is fully vaccinated, with numbers rising every day, there is an overwhelming gap between wealthy countries and the rest of the world. It's becoming evident that the impact on the countries getting left behind will eventually boomerang back to affect us all.

Photo by ismail mohamed - SoviLe on Unsplash

The international nonprofit CARE recently released a policy paper that lays out the case for U.S. investment in a worldwide vaccination campaign. Founded 75 years ago, CARE works in over 100 countries and reaches more than 90 million people around the world through multiple humanitarian aid programs. Of note is the organization's worldwide reputation for its unshakeable commitment to the dignity of people; they're known for working hand-in-hand with communities and hold themselves to a high standard of accountability.

"As we enter into our second year of living with COVID-19, it has become painfully clear that the safety of any person depends on the global community's ability to protect every person," says Michelle Nunn, CARE USA's president and CEO. "While wealthy nations have begun inoculating their populations, new devastatingly lethal variants of the virus continue to emerge in countries like India, South Africa and Brazil. If vaccinations don't effectively reach lower-income countries now, the long-term impact of COVID-19 will be catastrophic."

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