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This lieutenant general's incredible speech against racism is a must-watch.

After black cadets were targeted with racial slurs, Lt. Gen. Jay Silveria took a bold stand.

U.S. Air Force Academy superintendent Lt. Gen. Jay Silveria has responded to an incident of racial harassment on campus with a powerful message.

Days after news reports surfaced about five black cadets being targeted with racial slurs on dorm room message boards, Silveria delivered a speech to roughly 5,500 cadets, airmen, and academy staff. He set out to make it clear that what happened was unacceptable and, in the process, demonstrated how leaders should address acts of hate aimed at marginalized groups.  

In his five-minute speech, Silveria highlighted diversity as a source of power and strength within the academy and urged cadets to uphold its values.

Race relations in the U.S. aren't exactly in a great place right now, and too often, bigotry is going unchecked. Racism isn't an issue we can afford to ignore, even if it means having some very uncomfortable conversations.


[rebelmouse-image 19532781 dam="1" original_size="450x236" caption=""You should be outraged not only as an airman, but as a human being." All GIFs from KOAA5/YouTube." expand=1]"You should be outraged not only as an airman, but as a human being." All GIFs from KOAA5/YouTube.

"We would be naive to think that we shouldn’t discuss this topic," Silveria told the crowd. "We would also be tone-deaf not to think about the backdrop of what’s going on in our country. Things like Charlottesville and Ferguson, the protests in the NFL."

[rebelmouse-image 19532782 dam="1" original_size="450x236" caption=""This is our institution and no one can take away our values."" expand=1]"This is our institution and no one can take away our values."

"We come from all walks of life," he said, "that we come from all parts of this county, that we come from all races, we come from all backgrounds, gender, all makeup, all upbringing. The power of that diversity comes together and makes us that much more powerful."

It's in closing that Silveria made his most powerful point, asking the cadets in the room to pull out their phones so they could capture it on video.

"Just in case you're unclear on where I stand on this topic," he went on (emphasis added), "I'm going to leave you my most important thought today: If you can't treat someone with dignity and respect, then you need to get out."

[rebelmouse-image 19532784 dam="1" original_size="450x236" caption=""If you can't treat someone with dignity and respect, then you need to get out."" expand=1]"If you can't treat someone with dignity and respect, then you need to get out."

"If you can't treat someone from another gender, whether that's a man or a woman, with dignity and respect, then you need to get out. If you demean someone in any way, then you need to get out. And if you can't treat someone from another race or different color skin with dignity and respect, then you need to get out."

We still have a long way to go. This is just a start.

To be sure, there were plenty of valid criticisms of the speech. Jason Johnson at The Root criticized Silveria for "removing a 'problem' as opposed to eradicating it," and pointing to a number of fairly recent incidents that suggest the military doesn't have a handle on equality quite yet.

"It’s akin to finding out there is a serial rapist on campus and saying, 'This campus has no place for rapists, they must go!'" wrote Johnson. "Thanks, but maybe you should prosecute them too?"

With those points in mind, it's on all of us to push back on bigotry, discrimination, and marginalization in society. It's on all of us to help make the world a more just place for people of all backgrounds to live, work, and thrive.

Watch Silveria's speech below. It's worth seeing in its entirety.

Joy

1991 blooper clip of Robin Williams and Elmo is a wholesome nugget of comedic genius

Robin Williams is still bringing smiles to faces after all these years.

Robin Williams and Elmo (Kevin Clash) bloopers.

The late Robin Williams could make picking out socks funny, so pairing him with the fuzzy red monster Elmo was bound to be pure wholesome gold. Honestly, how the puppeteer, Kevin Clash, didn’t completely break character and bust out laughing is a miracle. In this short outtake clip, you get to see Williams crack a few jokes in his signature style while Elmo tries desperately to keep it together.

Williams has been a household name since what seems like the beginning of time, and before his death in 2014, he would make frequent appearances on "Sesame Street." The late actor played so many roles that if you were ask 10 different people what their favorite was, you’d likely get 10 different answers. But for the kids who spent their childhoods watching PBS, they got to see him being silly with his favorite monsters and a giant yellow canary. At least I think Big Bird is a canary.

When he stopped by "Sesame Street" for the special “Big Bird's Birthday or Let Me Eat Cake” in 1991, he was there to show Elmo all of the wonderful things you could do with a stick. Williams turns the stick into a hockey stick and a baton before losing his composure and walking off camera. The entire time, Elmo looks enthralled … if puppets can look enthralled. He’s definitely paying attention before slumping over at the realization that Williams goofed a line. But the actor comes back to continue the scene before Elmo slinks down inside his box after getting Williams’ name wrong, which causes his human co-star to take his stick and leave.

The little blooper reel is so cute and pure that it makes you feel good for a few minutes. For an additional boost of serotonin, check out this other (perfectly executed) clip about conflict that Williams did with the two-headed monster. He certainly had a way of engaging his audience, so it makes sense that even after all of these years, he's still greatly missed.

Noe Hernandez and Maria Carrillo, the owners of Noel Barber Shop in Anaheim, California.

Jordyn Poulter was the youngest member of the U.S. women’s volleyball team, which took home the gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics last year. She was named the best setter at the Tokyo games and has been a member of the team since 2018.

Unfortunately, according to a report from ABC 7 News, her gold medal was stolen from her car in a parking garage in Anaheim, California, on May 25.

It was taken along with her passport, which she kept in her glove compartment. While storing a gold medal in your car probably isn’t the best idea, she did it to keep it by her side while fulfilling the hectic schedule of an Olympian.

"We live this crazy life of living so many different places. So many of us play overseas, then go home, then come out here and train,” Poulter said, according to ABC 7. "So I keep the medal on me (to show) friends and family I haven't seen in a while, or just people in the community who want to see the medal. Everyone feels connected to it when they meet an Olympian, and it's such a cool thing to share with people."

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Co-sleeping isn't for everyone.

The marital bed is a symbol of the intimacy shared between people who’ve decided to be together 'til death they do part. When couples sleep together it’s an expression of their closeness and how they care for one another when they are most vulnerable.

However, for some couples, the marital bed can be a warzone. Throughout the night couples can endure snoring, sleep apnea, the ongoing battle for sheets or circadian rhythms that never seem to sync. If one person likes to fall asleep with the TV on while the other reads a book, it can be impossible to come to an agreement on a good-night routine.

Last week on TODAY, host Carson Daly reminded viewers that he and his wife Siri, a TODAY Food contributor, had a sleep divorce while she was pregnant with their fourth child.

“I was served my sleep-divorce papers a few years ago,” he explained on TODAY. “It’s the best thing that ever happened to us. We both, admittedly, slept better apart.”

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