Warning: This interview contains moments that may be hard to watch for some people.

Just moments after a lone gunman opened fire in a Thousand Oaks bar on Wednesday night, a local news station interviewed one of the survivors.

Understandably emotional, the man talks about his survivor’s guilt, apologizing to the victims he wasn’t able to help after rescuing his stepson from the tragic mass shooting.


“I should have stayed until he changed his clip but I was worried about my boy. But I should have stayed. I apologize,” the man says. “They’re all young. I’m 56. I’ve lived a life. This shouldn’t have happened to them.”

Over and over, the man emphasizes how those who were shot were mostly young and innocent people, simply out enjoying their lives.

“He’s shot the front door bouncer, just a young man,” he says.  “He shot the cashier, just a young girl. It was just some low-life taking lives that shouldn’t have been taken. There were young people, like 18, 19, 20, just having a great time.”

The journalist interviewing him repeatedly tries to reassure the man that there was nothing more he could have done, even reaching out to physically comfort him as he apologizes to those he wasn’t able to save.

“These people have never hurt anyone in their lives. And they’re just kids. I’m so sorry,” he says.

“It still feels like I didn’t do what I should have done.”

Of course, neither he nor any of the other victims deserve anything approaching blame for the tragic loss of life and mindless gun violence that transpired.

With so many mass shootings coming across our news feed, it’s increasingly difficult to pay attention to those impacted by the violence. For every Parkland moment, there is another mass shooting in and out of the news cycle before most people can even begin to process what happened.

That’s why it’s important to watch and digest interviews like this, as painful as they might be. We may not be responsible for the horrible gun violence that transpired but we are responsible for what happens next and staying focused on enacting reasonable gun safety laws and implementing mental health resources to help stop the next shooting before another innocent life is taken.

Moricz was banned from speaking up about LGBTQ topics. He found a brilliant workaround.

Senior class president Zander Moricz was given a fair warning: If he used his graduation speech to criticize the “Don’t Say Gay” law, then his microphone would be shut off immediately.

Moricz had been receiving a lot of attention for his LGBTQ activism prior to the ceremony. Moricz, an openly gay student at Pine View School for the Gifted in Florida, also organized student walkouts in protest and is the youngest public plaintiff in the state suing over the law formally known as the Parental Rights in Education law, which prohibits the discussion of sexual orientation or gender identity in grades K-3.

Though well beyond third grade, Moricz nevertheless was also banned from speaking up about the law, gender or sexuality. The 18-year-old tweeted, “I am the first openly-gay Class President in my school’s history–this censorship seems to show that they want me to be the last.”

However, during his speech, Moricz still delivered a powerful message about identity. Even if he did have to use a clever metaphor to do it.

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Matthew McConaughey in 2019.

Oscar-winning actor Matthew McConaughey made a heartfelt plea for Americans to “do better” on Tuesday after a gunman murdered 19 children and 2 adults at Robb Elementary School in his hometown of Uvalde, Texas.

Uvalde is a small town of about 16,000 residents approximately 85 miles west of San Antonio. The actor grew up in Uvalde until he was 11 years old when his family moved to Longview, 430 miles away.

The suspected murderer, 18-year-old Salvador Ramos, was killed by law enforcement at the scene of the crime. Before the rampage, Ramos allegedly shot his grandmother after a disagreement.

“As you all are aware there was another mass shooting today, this time in my home town of Uvalde, Texas,” McConaughey wrote in a statement shared on Twitter. “Once again, we have tragically proven that we are failing to be responsible for the rights our freedoms grant us.”

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Joy

50-years ago they trade a grilled cheese for a painting. Now it's worth a small fortune.

Irene and Tony Demas regularly traded food at their restaurant in exchange for crafts. It paid off big time.

Photo by Gio Bartlett on Unsplash

Painting traded for grilled cheese worth thousands.

The grilled cheese at Irene and Tony Demas’ restaurant was truly something special. The combination of freshly baked artisan bread and 5-year-old cheddar was enough to make anyone’s mouth water, but no one was nearly as devoted to the item as the restaurant’s regular, John Kinnear.

Kinnear loved the London, Ontario restaurant's grilled cheese so much that he ordered it every single day, though he wouldn’t always pay for it in cash. The Demases were well known for bartering their food in exchange for odds and ends from local craftspeople and merchants.

“Everyone supported everyone back then,” Irene told the Guardian, saying that the couple would often trade free soup and a sandwich for fresh flowers. Two different kinds of nourishment, you might say.

And so, in the 1970s the Demases made a deal with Kinnear that he could pay them for his grilled cheese sandwiches with artwork. Being a painter himself and part of an art community, Kinnear would never run out of that currency.

Little did Kinnear—or anyone—know, eventually he would give the Demases a painting worth an entire lifetime's supply of grilled cheeses. And then some.

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