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1. On April 25, 1993, a massive LGBTQ rights rally stormed the National Mall in Washington, D.C.

And it was a spectacular, colorful sight to be seen.

Photo by Mark Wilson/AP.


2. By some estimates, the March on Washington for Lesbian, Gay, and Bi Equal Rights and Liberation is one of the largest political rallies in U.S. history.

Exact crowd sizes are difficult to nail down. But many believe the march attracted somewhere between 300,000 and 800,000 supporters from across the country and world.

Photo by Paul Richards/AFP/Getty Images.

3. These smiling, energized, angry, determined marchers were trailblazers that, in so many ways, helped lead us to where we are today when it comes to LGBTQ rights.

4. Because, back in 1993, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people lived under dramatically different circumstances.

Photo by Aryeh Rabinovich/AFP/Getty Images.

The 1990s might seem like they were yesterday. But in certain respects, they may have felt like the Dark Ages if you weren't straight and cisgender.

5. For one, the HIV/AIDS epidemic was still raging at crisis levels in the early 1990s.

The spread of HIV/AIDS still is, without a doubt, a major health concern in the U.S. today, particularly for certain sub-populations. But at the time these photos were taken — before many medical advances allowed for HIV-positive people to live longer, healthier lives — overall mortality rates were still rising at an alarming speed. They finally began dropping in 1995.

Marlin Hofer and David Briley, the two men in the foreground, were both affected by the HIV/AIDS epidemic. When this photo was taken, Hofer was HIV-positive and Briley was living with AIDS. Photo by Wilfredo Lee/AP.

6. One major focus of the march was securing more federal funding for HIV/AIDS research and patient care.

The marchers' voices helped lead to a more robust strategy in combating the virus in the years ahead.

Marchers unfold an AIDS memorial quilt with names of those we've lost written on its squares. Photo by Jennifer Law/AFP/Getty Images.

7. Another goal for many marchers in 1993 was ending the military's ban on LGBTQ people serving.

8. These were the days before "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," when an ever harsher ban was in place.

Before "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" was passed in 1994 — technically allowing LGBTQ members to serve as long as they did so entirely in the closet — a more explicitly homophobic ban barred all LGBTQ people from serving regardless of their status as being out or not.

9. Let's not sugarcoat it; "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" was still blatantly homophobic. But its passing did loosen certain restrictions.

These marchers helped push progress forward so that we could eventually be where we're at today. "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" was effectively repealed in 2011, and today, LGBTQ people can serve openly in our armed forces.

Photo by Mark Wilson/AP.

10. The marchers of 1993 also had other key demands in mind, like better inclusion of LGBTQ people and history in our education systems.

Shouldn't students learn about historical figures like Harvey Milk and Marsha P. Johnson just like they learn about Abraham Lincoln or Martin Luther King Jr.?

These marchers thought so.

It's been a long time coming, but we're starting to see signs of progress here too. In 2016, California became the first state to require LGBTQ history curriculums in its public schools — a move that may be sparking a new nationwide fight for better queer representation in classrooms, according to Vice.

11. Marchers wanted more rights for LGBTQ parents, too.

Marriage equality was a long way from being a mainstream topic in 1993, believe it or not. But these marchers were fighting for issues like same-sex adoptions and fairer custody laws long before they had widespread support in the U.S.

We now have national marriage equality and same-sex adoption from coast to coast, and studies show that kids raised by same-sex or same-gender parents grow up just as well adjusted as their peers raised by straight, cisgender parents.

12. The march also demanded an end to discrimination in all of its forms, regarding gender, race, religion, and more.

As the official march platform read:

"We demand an end to discrimination and violent oppression based on actual or perceived sexual orientation, identification, race, religion, identity, sex and gender expression, disability, age, class, AIDS/HIV infection.”

13.  In so many ways, those marchers in Washington helped pave the way for much of the progress we can now celebrate.

They certainly weren't the first pioneers of the modern LGBTQ rights movement — the Stonewall rioters can wear that badge proudly — but history will look at the 1993 march as a pivotal moment for LGBTQ equality in America.

14. And for that, those marchers deserve a big thank you.

15. But over two decades later, the job is from over.

With a new administration in place threatening to strip away LGBTQ rights, every LGBTQ person and ally should be ready to fight like hell.

In its infancy, the Trump administration has already loosened protections for transgender kids in schools across the country. If the Affordable Care Act is gutted by congressional Republicans, our progress on HIV/AIDS could be reversed.

Vice President Mike Pence — one the most anti-LGBTQ politicians in the U.S. and who is sitting atop arguably the most homophobic and transphobic party platform ever in existence — has supported conversion therapy for children, legalized the discrimination of queer business patrons, and allowed an HIV outbreak to fester during his time as the governor of Indiana.

Trump's White House cannot be allowed to take us backward. On June 11, 2017, people are joining aPride march in Washington, ready to send a clear message to their representatives in office. Its impact has the potential to be just as loud — or louder — than in 1993.

16. Some things may have changed in the last 24 years, but our desire for nothing less than full equality remains the same.

"This whole experience has been very moving," marcher Barak Gale told The Washington Post about the march in 1993. "We don't want special rights; we just want the right to love like everyone else."

Photo by Marcy Nighswander/AP.

Photo courtesy of Girls at Work

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Pop Culture

Artist uses AI to create ultra realistic portraits of celebrities who left us too soon

What would certain icons look like if nothing had happened to them?

Mercury would be 76 today.

Some icons have truly left this world too early. It’s a tragedy when anyone doesn’t make it to see old age, but when it happens to a well-known public figure, it’s like a bit of their art and legacy dies with them. What might Freddie Mercury have created if he were granted the gift of long life? Bruce Lee? Princess Diana?

Their futures might be mere musings of our imagination, but thanks to a lot of creativity (and a little tech) we can now get a glimpse into what these celebrities might have looked like when they were older.

Alper Yesiltas, an Istanbul-based lawyer and photographer, created a photography series titled “As If Nothing Happened,” which features eerily realistic portraits of long gone celebrities in their golden years. To make the images as real looking as possible, Yesiltas incorporated various photo editing programs such as Adobe Lightroom and VSCO, as well as the AI photo-enhancing software Remini.

“The hardest part of the creative process for me is making the image feel ‘real’ to me,” Yesiltas wrote about his passion project. “The moment I like the most is when I think the image in front of me looks as if it was taken by a photographer.”

Yesiltas’ meticulousness paid off, because the results are uncanny.

Along with each photo, Yesiltas writes a bittersweet message “wishing” how things might have gone differently … as if nothing happened.
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All images provided by Adewole Adamson

It begins with more inclusive conversations at a patient level

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Adewole Adamson, MD, of the University of Texas, Austin, aims to create more equity in health care by gathering data from more diverse populations by using artificial intelligence (AI), a type of machine learning. Dr. Adamson’s work is funded by the American Cancer Society (ACS), an organization committed to advancing health equity through research priorities, programs and services for groups who have been marginalized.

Melanoma became a particular focus for Dr. Adamson after meeting Avery Smith, who lost his wife—a Black woman—to the deadly disease.

melanoma,  melanoma for dark skin Avery Smith (left) and Adamson (sidenote)

This personal encounter, coupled with multiple conversations with Black dermatology patients, drove Dr. Adamson to a concerning discovery: as advanced as AI is at detecting possible skin cancers, it is heavily biased.

To understand this bias, it helps to first know how AI works in the early detection of skin cancer, which Dr. Adamson explains in his paper for the New England Journal of Medicine (paywall). The process uses computers that rely on sets of accumulated data to learn what healthy or unhealthy skin looks like and then create an algorithm to predict diagnoses based on those data sets.

This process, known as supervised learning, could lead to huge benefits in preventive care.

After all, early detection is key to better outcomes. The problem is that the data sets don’t include enough information about darker skin tones. As Adamson put it, “everything is viewed through a ‘white lens.’”

“If you don’t teach the algorithm with a diverse set of images, then that algorithm won’t work out in the public that is diverse,” writes Adamson in a study he co-wrote with Smith (according to a story in The Atlantic). “So there’s risk, then, for people with skin of color to fall through the cracks.”

Tragically, Smith’s wife was diagnosed with melanoma too late and paid the ultimate price for it. And she was not an anomaly—though the disease is more common for White patients, Black cancer patients are far more likely to be diagnosed at later stages, causing a notable disparity in survival rates between non-Hispanics whites (90%) and non-Hispanic blacks (66%).

As a computer scientist, Smith suspected this racial bias and reached out to Adamson, hoping a Black dermatologist would have more diverse data sets. Though Adamson didn’t have what Smith was initially looking for, this realization ignited a personal mission to investigate and reduce disparities.

Now, Adamson uses the knowledge gained through his years of research to help advance the fight for health equity. To him, that means not only gaining a wider array of data sets, but also having more conversations with patients to understand how socioeconomic status impacts the level and efficiency of care.

“At the end of the day, what matters most is how we help patients at the patient level,” Adamson told Upworthy. “And how can you do that without knowing exactly what barriers they face?”

american cancer society, skin cacner treatment"What matters most is how we help patients at the patient level."https://www.kellydavidsonstudio.com/

The American Cancer Society believes everyone deserves a fair and just opportunity to prevent, find, treat, and survive cancer—regardless of how much money they make, the color of their skin, their sexual orientation, gender identity, their disability status, or where they live. Inclusive tools and resources on the Health Equity section of their website can be found here. For more information about skin cancer, visit cancer.org/skincancer.

Joe Biden's White House Competition Council is making airline prices transparent.

Have you ever seen a fantastic deal on an airplane ticket but as you are checking out you realize there are fees for just about everything? Your $99 airfare balloons up to $250 after you add baggage fees, carry-on charges, seat selection and insurance. Some airlines even charge an additional fee for unaccompanied minors.

Pretty soon, what seemed like a good deal on a cheap carrier costs more than if you bought a ticket on a full-service airline.

The Biden administration is announcing new rules that will make airline ticket fees more transparent to consumers. Under the proposed new rule, the first time your fee is displayed, travel websites will have to disclose any fees for baggage, cancellations or to sit with your child.

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As the saying goes, "You have to kiss a few frogs..."

Dating has certainly evolved over the years—we’ve gone from courtship being purely a financial arrangement (not that this trend has ever truly died) to knights jousting for a lady’s favor, to casual hookups … and now, romance is primarily found through an app more than anything else.

Technology used for meeting that special someone has become so advanced that you can base your search entirely upon specific interests. Like … oddly specific interests. Think a fellow cat person would be the purrfect match? There’s an app for that. Wish to “love long and prosper” with a fellow Trekkie? There’s an app for that too.

No matter the changes, one thing remains the same—dating is awkward. It’s got all the unspoken formalities of a job interview, disguised as innocent fun. The balance between playing it too cool and too eager is hard to find even for the smoothest among us, and usually results in total embarrassment. Even if we aren’t the ones committing those embarrassing acts ourselves, we are often the reluctant witness to them.

Terrible dates might not always be fun in the moment, but they can be just as important as the good ones. They can teach us a lot about ourselves and what qualities we want in a partner. And at the very least, they can teach us to embrace social clumsiness with a sense of humor.

Jimmy Fallon recently asked his “Tonight Show” audience on Twitter to share a “funny or embarrassing first date story” for his ever popular #Hashtags segment. The best part—some of these awful first dates ended in marriage. There’s hope for us all.

Below, find 15 stories that are truly the best of the worst. How do some of your first dates compare?

1. "After a nice dinner, she invited me to her house. On the way up, inside the elevator, I decided to push the button to stop between floors and give her a kiss... She had a phobia of closed spaces and she smacked my face as a reflex, two punches after we were kissing and laughing.” – @PanqueAlgarvio

2. “His jeans were so tight he couldn’t sit down. Stood at a bar stool the whole time.” – @onlyintheozarks

3. “Waiting 4 my date when an older couple asked me for a ride. my date came up and said sure! We drove them home & they asked us to come in. Date said “sure”. I pulled him back & asked why he wanted to hang w/strangers. He said ‘sh@t! YOU DON'T KNOW THEM!?’ We bolted!” – @natashaham75

facebook dating

Talk about a fashion faux pas.

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4. “Before the date, we had been chatting about books we liked and I talked about a great book I just read. We went on the date. I loaned her the book. She ghosted me.” – @thenextbarstool

5. “The worst first date I ever had was when my date locked his keys in the car and I had a curfew so he had to break his car window out to get me home on time. Didn’t think I’d ever see him again but we wound up married.” – @csleblan

6. “First date movie ‘Basic Instinct’ not realizing how suggestive it was. We just thought it was a mystery thriller! We left the movie discussing how each character could have actually murdered someone. We're married now.” – @Southrnbell_Amy

black people meet

There are worse first date movies tbh.

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7. “First date with my ex husband was a double date with his parents. The preview for ‘Speed Racer’ came on, and she leaned over me to say to her son, ‘You know what your dad's nickname in the bedroom is?’" – @theostoria

8. “A friend asked me on a double date as a blind date with his date's friend. I went to the bathroom and came back just in time to hear my date say to her friend, ‘why do I get the ugly one?’ I said good night to all three and headed home, leaving her w/the bill.” – @StevenTrustum

9. “He loved cheese. I was subjected to a 2 hour conversation/lecture about cheese, and why cottage cheese is not cheese!” – @Optimist_Eeyore

bumble

I'd like to see this two-hour cheese lecture.

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10. “He took me to an Asian fish market. We walked around looking at live & dead fish for a while. I don’t like seeing dead animals & I don’t eat seafood. Then we sat on a curb & he pulled out a ziplock bag of pineapple for us to share. I don’t like pineapple.” – @markayhali

11. “My cousin set up a first date for me with a family friend. During a break from dinner, Mr. Man follows me into the ladies’ room, comes up close and says in a low voice, ‘I shave my butt.’ Can’t remember what I said in response but the evening ended abruptly.” – @carli_zarzana

12. “I once took out my high school crush to a sports bar and ordered the spiciest wings there in an attempt to impress her. Not only was she not impressed. The next morning I woke up with heartburn.” –@Dmonster38

tindr conversation starters

Talk about a hot date.

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13. “My date showed up with his bestie and girlfriend, and they talked through dinner about people I don’t know. Walking to the car, he gave me a wedgie because he thought he hadn’t been paying enough attention to me.” – @surrealDazey


14. “I was taking my date home and was pulled over by the police for speeding. When the cop came to my car, she jumped out and told him she had to get home. She walked home and I never heard from her again. I'm not sure who's #WorstFirstDate it was mine or hers!” – @eastriverbear

15. “After an evening of dancing with a first date, leaving the dance hall, I had to take a quick pee break. Rushing out to the parking lot, I see a lady, I grab her and swoop her around, and plant a big wet kiss on the lips. She was another guy's wife. Oops!” – @seadogskamore

date you

Only Gomez could have gotten away with it.

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