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I will never be as confident about anything as many mediocre white men seem to be about everything.

I'm a capable, talented woman of color. I'm pretty sure of myself and my ability, but I've got my limits. Some people just ... don't.

And, sadly, many of those people, who lack self-awareness or good friends who question their intentions, decide the best use of their time, resources, and position of privilege is to run for office.


Jeb Bush (center) and Chris Christie chat at a Republican debate. Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images.

Because who's better to speak for the many diverse and rapidly-changing communities that make up this great country than a straight white man?

Answer: Pretty much anybody.

That's why 20-something political operatives and white men Jack Teter and Kyle Huelsman launched the Can You Not PAC.

Their mission is simple: ask, persuade, and/or disempower people with privilege (specifically straight white men) from running for public office in progressive urban areas. And with the help of an advisory board, the group plans to endorse a slate of women, people of color, and LGBTQ candidates instead.

"It is our job to bring down the confidence level of mediocre straight white men to their corresponding level of competence," the duo told Upworthy. "We are in a crisis of under-qualified, over-confident candidates."

Photo by Mark Lyons/Getty Images.

They're not making this up.

In a recent study out of American University, men are nearly 60% more likely than women to evaluate themselves as "very qualified" to run for elected office. Among the men who assessed themselves as "not qualified," 55% of them have still considered the idea of running for office despite their qualifications (or lack thereof).

The whole thing began as a joke, but now it has taken off. After starting at the state level, with a Colorado Political Committee, the founders are thinking about expansion.

"After receiving contributions from coast to coast, we realized there was a whole country of people who are tired of electing Ken Doll lookalikes," they said.

Martin O'Malley, everybody! Photo by Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images.

And no, this is not a case of self-loathing. It's political science.

Jack and Kyle are firm believers in progressive politics, and the data doesn't lie. A 2012 study from Emory University revealed African-Americans elected to the state legislature are more likely than other Democrats with similar constituencies to introduce measures that combat racial discrimination and improve access to health care.

Similarly, women in state legislatures are more likely to introduce legislation about reproductive health, bills dealing with children, women's health, and welfare.

So for people interested in progressive change, supporting women and people of color just makes sense.

But some would argue that if this all about dismantling ego and checking privilege, should two white dudes be leading the way?

Asking straight white men to take a seat is far from a new idea. People of color, women, and LGBTQ individuals have been raising this mantle since time eternal. There are organizations like Emily's List, Equality PAC, and the Latino Victory Project that encourage women, LGBTQ people, and people of color to pursue public office.



But Can You Not is the first one to actively encourage straight white men to sit out. That difference is especially noteworthy.

"I really, really firmly believe that it’s the absolute obligation of people in positions of privilege to dismantle oppressive power structures," Jack said. That goes for men calling B.S. on sexism, white people checking their privilege, and cisgender people speaking out against hateful legislation like North Carolina's recent "bathroom bill," HB2.


U.S. Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth speaks at the Emily's List 30th Anniversary Gala. Photo by Kris Connor/Getty Images for EMILY's List.

As one might assume, the Can You Not PAC is not without critics.

"We’ve been getting push back from two places: white supremacists who want to kill us, and young progressive white dudes who maybe want to run some day," Kyle said.

The former is difficult to reason with, but getting the latter on board is crucial and has already lead to some enlightening conversations.

Photo by iStock.

"People get defensive, as they should — anyone who wants to run for office better be ready to explain to people why they’re the best representative of their community," he added.

And hey, idealist, progressive white guys: Can You Not is not suggesting you abandon your political dreams altogether. As Jack said,

"We’re saying that aspirational young white guys who want to be in politics because they love the 'West Wing' should use their passion and their time and their talent to make politics look less like them — because it’s good government, because it’s good progressive policy, and because it’s the right thing to do to fight hundreds of years of egregious overrepresentation of straight white men to the disservice of marginalized communities all over the country. Sometimes the best thing you can do is step aside so other people can lead."

We've been a country for nearly 240 years, and straight white guys have been a majority of the decisionmakers (for better or worse) for the entire time.

No matter where you fall politically, adding new and diverse voices is vital to sustaining thoughtful dialogue and best representing this country's rapidly changing demographics. There's no better time than right this minute for traditionally underrepresented voices to stand up and drive the nation forward, with or without groups like Can You Not.

"In short: Women, LGBT folks, and people of color don’t need straight white men to save them or to speak for them in politics," Jack said. "They need them to get the hell out of the way."


Photo by WOCInTech Chat/Flickr (cropped).


True

The last thing children should have to worry about is where their next meal will come from. But the unfortunate reality is food insecurity is all too common in this country.

In an effort to help combat this pressing issue, KFC is teaming up with Blessings in a Backpack to provide nearly 70,000 meals to families in need and spread holiday cheer along the way.

The KFC Sharemobile, a holiday-edition charitable food truck, will be making stops at schools in Chicago, Orlando, and Houston in December to share KFC family meals and special gifts for a few select families to address specific needs identified by their respective schools.

These cities were chosen based on the high level of food insecurity present in their communities and hardships they’ve faced, such as a devastating hurricane season in Florida and an unprecedented winter storm in Houston. In 2021, five million children across the US lived in food-insecure households, according to the USDA.

“Sharing a meal with family or friends is a special part of the holidays,” said Nick Chavez, CMO of KFC U.S. “Alongside our franchisees, we wanted to make that possible for even more families this holiday season.”

KFC will also be making a donation to Blessings in a Backpack, a nonprofit that works to provide weekend meals to school-aged children across America who might otherwise go hungry.

“The generous donations from KFC could not have come at a better time, as these communities have been particularly hard-hit this year with rising food costs, inflation and various natural disasters,” Erin Kerr, the CEO of Blessings in a Backpack, told Upworthy. “Because of KFC’s support, we’re able to spread holiday cheer by donating meals for hunger-free weekends and meet each community’s needs,” Kerr said.

This isn’t the first time KFC has worked with Blessings in a Backpack. The fried chicken chain has partnered with the nonprofit for the last six years, donating nearly $1 million dollars. KFC employees also volunteer weekly to package and provide meals to students in Louisville, Kentucky who need food over the weekend.

KFC franchisees are also bringing the Sharemobile concept to life in markets across the country through local food donations and other holiday giveback moments. Ampex Brands, a KFC franchisee based in Dallas, recently held its annual Day of Giving event and donated 11,000 meals to school children in economically disadvantaged neighborhoods.

If you’d like to get involved, you can make a donation to help feed students in need at kfc.com/kfcsharemobile. Every bit helps, but a donation of $150 helps feed a student on the weekends for an entire 38-week school year, and a donation as low as $4 will feed a child for a whole weekend.

Celine Dion spoke directly to her fans on social media.

Celine Dion has shared the devastating news that she has been diagnosed with a rare neurological disorder called stiff person syndrome.

In an emotional video to her fans, the 54-year-old French-Canadian singer apologized for taking so long to reach out and explained that her health struggles have been difficult to talk about.

"As you know, I have always been an open book, and I wasn't ready to say anything before. But I'm ready now."

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This week's finds include an adorable baby's first 'Dada,' an appreciative delivery driver, an angel rocking out to 'O Come, All Ye Faithful' and more.

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Ho ho ho, happy humans!

It's that time of the week again, when we gather together the most smile-worthy tidbits of the past seven days and share them with you all. As the lucky person who gets to wrap them up in a nice, shiny, virtual bow, I'm delighted to tell you that this week's list is awesome. They always are—that's kind of the point—but this week I can practically guarantee you're going to be brimming with joy by the end.

Right out of the gate, we've got baby giggles. I mean, come on. Who can resist baby giggles?

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Tenacious D performs at the Rock in Pott festival.

The medley that closes out the second side of the Beatles’ “Abbey Road” album is one of the most impressive displays of musicianship in the band’s storied career. It also provided the perfect send-off before the band’s official breakup months later, ending with the lyrics, “And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make.”

In 1969, “Abbey Road” was the last record the group made together, although “Let it Be,” recorded earlier that year, was released in 1970.

At first, the medley was just a clever way for the band to use a handful of half-finished tunes, but when it came together it was a rousing, grandiose affair.

Arranged by Paul McCartney and producer George Martin, the medley weaves together five songs written by McCartney, "You Never Give Me Your Money," "She Came in Through the Bathroom Window," "Golden Slumbers," "Carry That Weight” and "The End," and three by John Lennon, “Sun King," "Mean Mr. Mustard" and "Polythene Pam."

Fifteen seconds after the medley and the album’s conclusion, there is a surprise treat, McCartney’s 22-second “Her Majesty,” which wound up on the record as an accident.

Jack Black and Kyle Gass, collectively known as Tenacious D, recently reimagined two of the songs in the medley, "You Never Give Me Your Money" and "The End," for acoustic guitars for a performance on SiriusXM's Octane Channel. Like everything with Tenacious D, it showed off the duo’s impressive musical chops as well as their fantastic sense of humor.

The truncated version of the medley was also a wonderful tribute to the incredible work the Beatles did 53 years ago.

Warning: This video contains NSFW language.

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Every year, moms put on their elf hats and become Santa's helpers. They shop for and wrap the family's presents, cook the holiday meal, organize the crafts and even set out cookies for the big guy. They're so busy making the holiday season magical for their family that oftentimes they don't get any time to rest.

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