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The real reason why this pic of sharks right off the Florida coast is scary.

Thousands of sharks are hanging out near Fort Lauderdale right now.

The real reason why this pic of sharks right off the Florida coast is scary.

Right now, there are tens of thousands of sharks chilling off the coast of Florida.

If you ask me — someone who is terribly afraid of sharks — this aerial shot is what nightmares are made of.

Photo by Mark Mohlmann​, used with permission from Stephen Kajiura​.


These marine beasts are on the move. Just like (most) humans, sharks don't like swimming in frigid waters. So every winter, they wander to warmer temperatures. Like the coast of Florida.

While cold-blooded shark-phobic Chicagoans like me would be running in the opposite direction, Floridans haven't let this swarm of migrating toothy killers complicate their beach plans. You can still spot them swimming, boating, and paddle boarding near the Palm Beach County coastline doing their thing — as if there aren't fanged, blood-thirsty sea savages just hundreds of feet away. (Officials haven't stopped them from their fun in the sun, either! How irresponsible.)

...OK, I get it — they're not that bad. My irrational fear of sharks is completely distorting the situation. But still ... you wouldn't judge me for postponing my Florida vacay right about now, right?

Photo by Mark Mohlmann​, used with permission from Stephen Kajiura​.

These sharks aren't actually all that scary when you get your facts straight.

Despite the images that look like they were snapped during the filming of some twisted version of "Jaws 5," (they're on #5, right?) these creatures aren't so bad.

These are blacktip sharks. They average about six feet in length, and — despite the swarms of black dots you see on these photos — are actually on the "near-threatened" list by the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources, as The Washington Post noted. For the most part, they stay clear of people.

Photo by Mark Mohlmann​, used with permission from Stephen Kajiura​.

“These sharks are pretty skittish,” Stephen Kajiura, an associate professor at Florida Atlantic University who's tagging the animals to better understand how they migrate across open waters, told ABC News. “So when they see a human, they swim away.”

Although blacktip sharks have the largest number of bites than any other shark in Florida (in large part because they're the most common), the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reports that they've never killed anyone there. For the most part, they do their thing, and we do ours.

While the sharks themselves aren't all that scary, their migration patterns hint at something a bit more terrifying.

Yep. It's climate change: the ultimate party pooper. 

Usually, the sharks would migrate a bit farther south, toward Miami, according to Kajiura. But it seems as though they've found just the right temperatures near neighboring Fort Lauderdale this year. And a warming ocean may play a role in the sharks' decision to stay put up the coast.

“It looks like there’s a correlation between global warming and [the blacktip sharks'] expanding range,” Kajiura told The Christian Science Monitor. “They’re moving further north to find their ideal temperature.”

Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images.

While this doesn't pose an increased safety risk to any people (again, these sharks aren't nearly as villainous or terrifying as my shark-phobia suggests), this "expanding range" Kajiura speaks of should raise some eyebrows.

Climate change is drastically changing our oceans and the life in them, and the effects are (and will continue to be) costly.

Increasingly higher temperatures could make our oceans unrecognizable by the end of this century unless carbon emissions are slashed big time (and soon), research suggests.

Photo by Torsten Blackwood - Pool/Getty Images.

study released last summer found that by 2100, climate change could be the culprit of the most dramatic re-arrangement of marine life in at least 3 million years, as Mashable reported. 

Oceans near the poles (where not a whole lot of people live) will see a big rise in sea life as its waters heat up, while biodiversity in waters near the equator (where lots of people live) will plummet. This could have huge ramifications on industries like fishing, and mean major (and expensive) economic shifts.

“It’s really worrying, because this is the whole ocean that will change,” Grégory Beaugrand, who co-authored the study published in the journal, "Nature Climate Change," told Mashable.

This re-arrangement "will have a devastating impact on fisherman and from a socioeconomic point of view."

There's reason to hope the world is finally taking climate change more seriously, though. And that's good news for sharks (and people).

Last year was historic in the fight against global warming. A United Nations summit in Paris brought together countries from all over the world — including the major carbon offenders (yeah, I'm looking at you, America and China) — to set ambitious goals to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels. Environmentalists are cautiously optimistic the agreed upon carbon targets could be a turning point.

Photo by Francois Guillot/AFP/Getty Images.

And, hey, get this: Due to increased use of renewable energies and China slowly kicking its dirty coal habit, 2015 is expected to be the very first year the world's carbon emissions stalled — or even declined — during a year of global economic growth, the BBC reported. That's pretty huge.

It's a good thing humanity is finally waking up to the dangers of climate change, because it's not just sharks whose home hangs in the balance.

Let's keep this earth as green (and blue) as long as we can.

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Macy's and Girls Inc. believe that all girls deserve to be safe, supported, and valued. However, racial disparities continue to exist for young people when it comes to education levels, employment, and opportunities for growth. Add to that the gender divide, and it's clear to see why it's important for girls of color to have access to mentors who can equip them with the tools needed to navigate gender, economic, and social barriers.

Anissa Rivera is one of those mentors. Rivera is a recent Program Manager at the Long Island affiliate of Girls Inc., a nonprofit focusing on the holistic development of girls ages 5-18. The goal of the organization is to provide a safe space for girls to develop long-lasting mentoring relationships and build the skills, knowledge, and attitudes to thrive now and as adults.

Rivera spent years of her career working within the themes of self and community empowerment with young people — encouraging them to tap into their full potential. Her passion for youth development and female empowerment eventually led her to Girls Inc., where she served as an agent of positive change helping to inspire all girls to be strong, smart, and bold.

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Inspiring young women from all backgrounds is why Macy's has continued to partner with Girls Inc. for the second year in a row. The partnership will support mentoring programming that offers girls career readiness, college preparation, financial literacy, and more. Last year, Macy's raised over $1.3M for Girls Inc. in support of this program along with their Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) programming for more than 26,000 girls. Studies show that girls who participated are more likely than their peers to enjoy math and science, score higher on standardized math tests, and be more equipped for college and campus life.

Thanks to mentors like Rivera, girls across the country have the tools they need to excel in school and the confidence to change the world. With your help, we can give even more girls the opportunity to rise up. Throughout September 2021, customers can round up their in-store purchases or donate online to support Girls Inc. at Macys.com/MacysGives.

Who runs the world? Girls!

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Over the past six years, it feels like race relations have been on the decline in the U.S. We've lived through Donald Trump's appeals to America's racist underbelly. The nation has endured countless murders of unarmed Black people by police. We've also been bombarded with viral videos of people calling the police on people of color for simply going about their daily lives.

Earlier this year there was a series of incidents in which Asian-Americans were the targets of racist attacks inspired by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Given all that we've seen in the past half-decade, it makes sense for many to believe that race relations in the U.S. are on the decline.

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Did you know that girls who are encouraged to discover and develop their strengths tend to be more likely to achieve their goals? It's true. The question, however, is how to encourage girls to develop self-confidence and grow up healthy, educated, and independent.

The answer lies in Girls Inc., a national nonprofit serving girls ages 5-18 in more than 350 cities across North America. Since first forming in 1864 to serve girls and young women who were experiencing upheaval in the aftermath of the Civil War, they've been on a mission to inspire girls to kick butt and step into leadership roles — today and in the future.

This is why Macy's has committed to partnering with Girls Inc. and making it easy to support their mission. In a national campaign running throughout September 2021, customers can round up their in-store purchases to the nearest dollar or donate online to support Girls Inc. and empower girls throughout the country.


Kaylin St. Victor, a senior at Brentwood High School in New York, is one of those girls. She became involved in the Long Island affiliate of Girls Inc. when she was in 9th grade, quickly becoming a role model for her peers.

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Within her first year in the organization, she bravely took on speaking opportunities and participated in several summer programs focused on advocacy, leadership, and STEM (science, technology, engineering and math). "The women that I met each have a story that inspires me to become a better person than I was yesterday," said St. Victor. She credits her time at Girls Inc. with making her stronger and more comfortable in her own skin — confidence that directly translates to high achievement in education and the workforce.

In 2020, Macy's helped raise $1.3 million in support of their STEM and college and career readiness programming for more than 26,000 girls. In fact, according to a recent study, Girls Inc. girls are significantly more likely than their peers to enjoy math and science, to be interested in STEM careers, and to perform better on standardized math tests.

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