The internet needs more pictures of black men smiling. Here are 11.

When we see black men represented in TV or films, they're often angry, stern — or even worse — completely emotionless.

We rarely get to see black characters experience emotional arcs that include joy, spontaneity, or anything resembling a care-free moment.

But in reality, we know that's not true. Black men are just as dynamic, hopeful, fun-loving, and happy as the rest of us. They just don't always get the space or opportunity to share those dimensions of their humanity with the world — until now.


The hashtag, #BlackMenSmiling, is the perfect antidote to representations of black men as long-suffering, mean, or cold.

The trend began after a simple request from from comedian @Felonious_Munk.

Black men came through with beautiful selfies and carefree moments with friends and family. Women chimed in too, sharing pics of the joyful men and boys in their lives, and the occasional picture of President Barack Obama and Prince too. (Why not?) The results are so simple, and yet so powerful.

1. Black men stepped up to challenge stereotypes and push back on tired tropes.

2. And improve their corner of the internet, not just for themselves, but for their kids too.

3. Some of the best submissions came from men who don't usually smile for pictures, but put themselves out there to participate.

4. And the fellas with those perfectly imperfect smiles joined in too.

As they should!

5. A few men have been waiting on this hashtag for years.

They were born ready!

6. For some, it took a little digging to find a photo with a smile.

Which is only motivation to smile more.

7. Because there's so much for black men to smile about.

8.  From life's biggest moments ...

9. ... to the little things that make an ordinary day extraordinary.

10. This hashtag is a celebration of black men.

11. And a beautiful portrait of the well-rounded, joyful, people we know and love.

#BlackMenSmiling is more than a throwaway hashtag, it's an act of resistance.

It often feels like we live in a country that doesn't want to see black men healthy, successful, and happy. They're considered a threat when they're driving in cars, walking into their own homes, or even playing outside. It would be easy to shut down, to be mad at the world. But they don't.

So every grin, every toothy smile, every bright eye and cheerful dimple is an act of resistance. You can't dim a black man's shine. You cannot tame his spirit or claim his joy. Not today, not ever.

And sometimes, you just need a hashtag to remind the world of that.

More
via The Guardian / YouTube

Beluga whales are affectionately known as sea canaries for their song-like vocalizations, and their name is the Russian word for "white."

They are sociable animals that live, hunt, and migrate together in pods, ranging from a few individuals to hundreds of whales. However, they are naturally reticent to interact with humans, although some solitary belugas are known to approach boats.

Once such beluga that's believed to live in Norwegian waters is so comfortable among humans that it played fetch with a rugby ball.

Keep Reading Show less
popular

Many of us are too young to remember the hijacking of Pan Am Flight 73 of 1986, much less any details about it. But thanks to a viral Facebook post from Misfit History, some attention is being shed on an incredible heroine who saved many American lives in the standoff.

The post reads:

Keep Reading Show less
popular

The truth doesn't hurt for an elementary school teacher in California who's gone viral for teaching her class an empowering remix of one of Lizzo's hit songs.

Ms. Mallari — who teaches at Los Medanos Elementary School in Pittsburg, east of San Francisco — took the singer's song, "Truth Hurts," and reworked the lyrics to teach her students how to be great.

Lizzo's song made history this year for being the longest running number one single from a female rap artist. The catchy original lyrics are about boy problems, but Mallari's remix teaches her students about fairness, helping each other out, and embracing their own greatness.

Keep Reading Show less
popular
via Newsy People / Twitter

The internet was ablaze after notoriously private actor Keanu Reeves, 55, walked the red carpet at the LACMA Art + Film Gala on Saturday with his new girlfriend, artist Alexandra Grant, 46.

It was refreshing to see a man in Hollywood dating a woman who's age-appropriate. Older actors are notorious for being with women half their age.

Keep Reading Show less
popular