This aboriginal Australian used kindness and tea to trump the racism he overheard.

We've all been there: You're walking in a park or sitting at the movies, and you overhear someone saying something downright awful.

It might be something ridiculously sexist, astoundingly racist, or maybe just so generally insensitive that you can't help but be like...

GIF from "Sword in the Stone."


"Does that person know it's 2016?" you ask yourself in disbelief, grasping at the small sliver of faith in humanity left in your soul.

Last week, while eating lunch at a restaurant, Jarred Wall had a similar experience — except the awful thing said was about people like him.

Wall, an Australian who is aboriginal, overheard two women saying some terrible stuff about those in his community.

"Food was great but to our misfortune we inadvertently heard two elderly ladies, seated next to us, chatting about aboriginals," he wrote in a Facebook post. "The conversation was less than distasteful with words like assimilation thrown around willy nilly."

Though the women's comments stung, instead of unleashing a "tirade of abuse" in response to their words, Wall wrote that he decided to take the high road.

He bought a pot of tea for the women, and left a note on the receipt: "Enjoy the tea! Compliments of the 2 aboriginals sitting next to you on table 26. :)"

Went out for lunch today. Food was great but to our misfortune we inadvertently heard two elderly ladies, seated next to...

Posted by Jarred Wall on Thursday, September 8, 2016

In other words, he fought their hate with a simple act of kindness.

Racism against aboriginal Australians may be a foreign concept for some Americans, but it's a very real thing in Australia.

Research suggests systemic racism against indigenous aboriginals is a "persistent but hidden phenomenon" in Australia, particularly in the workplace.

Similar to how Native Americans still face widespread oppression in the U.S., Australia's aboriginals face unique hardships in the predominantly white, westernized society in which they live.

A protest in favor of more protections for indigenous communities in Melbourne, Australia, in 2015. Photo by Chris Hopkins/Getty Images.

According to Annette Vickery of the Victorian Aboriginal Legal Service Co-operative, discrimination against Australia's aboriginals is "an invisible barrier wherever you go."

"It's on every front," she said, The Age reported. "From being included in a mainstream school to accessing normal services that everybody else accesses, to employment, personal loans, housing, private rentals, even accessing a restaurant."

"It is debilitating to people experiencing [racism], because it is like fighting shadows; always there, but hard to prove."
— Annette Vickery

Wall's experience, although unfortunate, isn't unique.

Wall ended his Facebook post with the hashtag #BlackLivesMatter, which shows just how global the movement of communities fighting racial injustice has become.

Including #BlackLivesMatter — which originally launched as a means to end systemic racism in police forces across the U.S. — was a powerful way to highlight that racism isn't just an issue for a single community. Racism takes many forms across many communities around the world, and we should be unified in fighting them together.

#BlackLivesMatter has, at the very least, started a worldwide conversation about how we can get better at ensuring equality for all members of every society in every country and on every continent.

Photo by Daniel Leal-Olivas/AFP/Getty Images.

For Wall, his simple act of generosity worked to counter racial bias on a much smaller scale — yet it's proving to have a global impact: His post has been shared nearly 3,000 times with users around the world.

Wall said he simply wants to motivate others to think twice about the impact of their words.

"They were elderly ladies, I didn't want to humiliate anyone or cause conflict," he told Mashable of the experience.

But "maybe these ladies will be a little wiser and think before they speak," he wrote in his post. "Hopefully there won't be a next time!"

When "bobcat" trended on Twitter this week, no one anticipated the unreal series of events they were about to witness. The bizarre bobcat encounter was captured on a security cam video and...well...you just have to see it. (Read the following description if you want to be prepared, or skip down to the video if you want to be surprised. I promise, it's a wild ride either way.)

In a North Carolina neighborhood that looks like a present-day Pleasantville, a man carries a cup of coffee and a plate of brownies out to his car. "Good mornin!" he calls cheerfully to a neighbor jogging by. As he sets his coffee cup on the hood of the car, he says, "I need to wash my car." Well, shucks. His wife enters the camera frame on the other side of the car.

So far, it's just about the most classic modern Americana scene imaginable. And then...

A horrifying "rrrrawwwww!" Blood-curdling screaming. Running. Panic. The man abandons the brownies, races to his wife's side of the car, then emerges with an animal in his hands. He holds the creature up like Rafiki holding up Simba, then yells in its face, "Oh my god! It's a bobcat! Oh my god!"

Then he hucks the bobcat across the yard with all his might.

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Images courtesy of John Scully, Walden University, Ingrid Scully
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Since March of 2020, over 29 million Americans have been diagnosed with COVID-19, according to the CDC. Over 540,000 have died in the United States as this unprecedented pandemic has swept the globe. And yet, by the end of 2020, it looked like science was winning: vaccines had been developed.

In celebration of the power of science we spoke to three people: an individual, a medical provider, and a vaccine scientist about how vaccines have impacted them throughout their lives. Here are their answers:

John Scully, 79, resident of Florida

Photo courtesy of John Scully

When John Scully was born, America was in the midst of an epidemic: tens of thousands of children in the United States were falling ill with paralytic poliomyelitis — otherwise known as polio, a disease that attacks the central nervous system and often leaves its victims partially or fully paralyzed.

"As kids, we were all afraid of getting polio," he says, "because if you got polio, you could end up in the dreaded iron lung and we were all terrified of those." Iron lungs were respirators that enclosed most of a person's body; people with severe cases often would end up in these respirators as they fought for their lives.

John remembers going to see matinee showings of cowboy movies on Saturdays and, before the movie, shorts would run. "Usually they showed the news," he says, "but I just remember seeing this one clip warning us about polio and it just showed all these kids in iron lungs." If kids survived the iron lung, they'd often come back to school on crutches, in leg braces, or in wheelchairs.

"We all tried to be really careful in the summer — or, as we called it back then, 'polio season,''" John says. This was because every year around Memorial Day, major outbreaks would begin to emerge and they'd spike sometime around August. People weren't really sure how the disease spread at the time, but many believed it traveled through the water. There was no cure — and every child was susceptible to getting sick with it.

"We couldn't swim in hot weather," he remembers, "and the municipal outdoor pool would close down in August."

Then, in 1954 clinical trials began for Dr. Jonas Salk's vaccine against polio and within a year, his vaccine was announced safe. "I got that vaccine at school," John says. Within two years, U.S. polio cases had dropped 85-95 percent — even before a second vaccine was developed by Dr. Albert Sabin in the 1960s. "I remember how much better things got after the vaccines came out. They changed everything," John says.

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