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When he's not on the road, selling out theaters, or filming specials, comedian Dave Chappelle makes his home in Yellow Springs, Ohio.

It's a small, mostly white town outside Dayton where Chappelle grew up and went to school. You may recall he returned to Yellow Springs to invite residents to attend his outdoor concert in Brooklyn for "Dave Chappelle's Block Party." Now the comedian is raising his own kids there. It would be easy to say he's come full circle, but his heart never really left.

Photo by Eugene Gologursky/Getty Images for Bombay Sapphire Gin.


Like many residents, Chappelle was shocked by the events that took place in Yellow Springs on New Year's Eve.

Following the town's annual midnight ball drop, people usually clear out on their own. But just minutes into 2017, police drove cruisers through the crowd, sirens wailing. After an intense back-and-forth between partygoers and police, one reveler, David Carlson, who is black, was slammed to the ground by officers. Community members were immediately outraged by the officer's aggressive tactics. The chief of police resigned days later. And the tight-knit community is still reeling after the incident, which made national news.

Photo by iStock.

In the wake of the incident, Chappelle went to the village council meeting to make an impassioned push for progressive, community policing.

As Yellow Springs prepares to hire a new police chief, the village council held a public meeting March 6, 2017, to address community issues, including police behavior. Chappelle spoke to the council and shared fond memories of the police force he grew up with. But today, Chappelle feels like the officers don't know Yellow Springs or its residents.

"Now we're being policed by what feels like an alien force," he told the council.

This wasn't a call for "the good old days" but instead a plea to build and restore trust from the ground up.

Chappelle pushed for progressive policing, which focuses on relationship building, particularly with law enforcement and communities of color. It's accomplished through better data collection, improved training, and a focus on recruiting and retaining officers that look like the communities they serve.

"I would beseech the council to look deeply and to look hard. Because ... this is a golden opportunity," Chappelle said. "Literally you could kill the game. I mean in this Trump era, there's an opportunity to show everybody that local politics reigns supreme."  

When we get active at the local level, we can all improve our respective corners of the world.

Whether you're Dave Chappelle and you squeeze in a town hall meeting or two before your Netflix specials come out or you're Chance the Rapper announcing plans to donate $1 million to the public school system that made you and needs your help or you're a person reading this on your bus ride home, there's always something you can do to make an impact in your community. No celebrity status required. We can all build and shape the cities we want, but it starts with showing up.

Guests listen as Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-Illinois) speaks during a town hall meeting on March 6, 2017, in Chicago. Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images.

It may be attending or speaking at a city council meeting. It might be hosting a block party, cleaning up a local park, or making sure local schools have the resources they need. Perhaps it's voting for policies and referenda that will impact residents for generations to come. These seemingly small acts can make a big difference. And unlike politics at the national level, you'll likely see a greater and more immediate impact when you get involved at the local level.

Need some inspiration? Watch Chappelle's address to the Yellow Springs village council.

A breastfeeding mother's experience at Vienna's Schoenbrunn Zoo is touching people's hearts—but not without a fair amount of controversy.

Gemma Copeland shared her story on Facebook, which was then picked up by the Facebook page Boobie Babies. Photos show the mom breastfeeding her baby next to the window of the zoo's orangutan habitat, with a female orangutan sitting close to the glass, gazing at them.

"Today I got feeding support from the most unlikely of places, the most surreal moment of my life that had me in tears," Copeland wrote.

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Canva

Small actions lead to big movements.

Acts of kindness—we know they’re important not only for others, but for ourselves. They can contribute to a more positive community and help us feel more connected, happier even. But in our incessantly busy and hectic lives, performing good deeds can feel like an unattainable goal. Or perhaps we equate generosity with monetary contribution, which can feel like an impossible task depending on a person’s financial situation.

Perhaps surprisingly, the main reason people don’t offer more acts of kindness is the fear of being misunderstood. That is, at least, according to The Kindness Test—an online questionnaire about being nice to others that more than 60,000 people from 144 countries completed. It does make sense—having your good intentions be viewed as an awkward source of discomfort is not exactly fun for either party.

However, the results of The Kindness Test also indicated those fears were perhaps unfounded. The most common words people used were "happy," "grateful," "loved," "relieved" and "pleased" to describe their feelings after receiving kindness. Less than 1% of people said they felt embarrassed, according to the BBC.


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via UNSW

This article originally appeared on 07.10.21


Dr. Daniel Mansfield and his team at the University of New South Wales in Australia have just made an incredible discovery. While studying a 3,700-year-old tablet from the ancient civilization of Babylon, they found evidence that the Babylonians were doing something astounding: trigonometry!

Most historians have credited the Greeks with creating the study of triangles' sides and angles, but this tablet presents indisputable evidence that the Babylonians were using the technique 1,500 years before the Greeks ever were.


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