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Trump asked these NFL players who they thought should be pardoned. Here's their response.

If he was serious about the gesture, he'll want to see this.

Just days after he canceled the Philadelphia Eagles' planned trip to the White House, President Donald Trump did something unexpected: He offered to hear them out.

In a major departure from the heated rhetoric he's spent the better part of two years slinging in the direction of NFL players, Trump asked players to recommend people they'd like to see pardoned or who they felt were wronged by the justice system:

"I'm going to ask all of those people to recommend to me — because that's what they're protesting — people that they think were unfairly treated by the justice system. And I understand that. I'm going to ask them to recommend to me people that were unfairly treated and I'm gonna take a look at those applications and if I find, and my committee finds, that they've been unfairly treated than we'll pardon them. Or at least let them out."

A number of players responded, calling on the president to commute the sentences of people convicted of nonviolent drug offenses.

One of the sports world's most vocal Trump critics, Eagles defensive lineman Chris Long, published a video to his Twitter profile.


"Mr. President, as of 2012, there were over 11,000 people sitting in federal prisons on marijuana-related offenses. It is now legal recreationally and/or medicinally in almost 30 states. There are people freely profiting off of it, as they should be. Yet still, there are thousands sitting in prison. Those people should be pardoned. There are also numerous cases of people sentenced to life without parole for nonviolent drug crimes. They should not die in prison, and in most cases, people having served decades have done their time. They should go home."

Eagles safety Malcolm Jenkins, who recently made news when he responded to reporters' questions with handwritten messages on poster board, posted a video of his own.

"Mr. President, we should pardon those who have life without parole for nonviolent offenses who have served a large portion of their time. Currently, over half of the men and women sentenced to die in federal prison are there because of nonviolent crimes, 30% of which are there for nonviolent drug offenses. And as of 2013, nearly two-thirds of those people were black. Our system is not rehabilitative. There needs to be a focus on helping people become better contributing citizens when they do return to society as well as provide the opportunity to re-enter in a reasonable time for nonviolent offenses."

Jenkins, along with fellow NFL players Doug Baldwin, Anquan Boldin, and Ben Watson, elaborated on those thoughts in an opinion piece published with The New York Times.

The players note Trump's recent commendable action commuting Alice Johnson, a 63-year-old woman who was serving a life sentence for a nonviolent drug conviction. Sadly, many others, just like Johnson, remain in prison for nonviolent offenses. Fixing this will take more than "a handful of pardons," the players state.

Malcolm Jenkins holds his daughter after winning Super Bowl LII on Feb. 4, 2018. Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images.

"These are problems that our government has created, many of which occur at the local level," they write. "If President Trump thinks he can end these injustices if we deliver him a few names, he hasn't been listening to us."

Still, he can put his pardon power to good use, chipping away at the number of people serving these sentences. The players suggest commuting sentences of nonviolent drug offenders over the age of 60 who haven't been recently convicted. That type of approach would make a lot of sense because those people pose little threat to society and cost the government more money than average to keep incarcerated. Beyond that, the players suggest working with the Department of Justice to eliminate life without parole sentences for nonviolent crimes.

There's something else that seems to get lost in the conversation around anthem protests: These players are more than just players.

"Our being professional athletes has nothing to do with our commitment to fighting injustice," they argue. "We are citizens who embrace the values of empathy, integrity, and justice, and we will fight for what we believe is right. We weren't elected to do this. We do it because we love this country, our communities, and the people in them. This is our America, our right."

Malcolm Jenkins and Chris Long stand during the national anthem during a September 2017 game. Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images.

A cursory glance into the background of some of the NFL stars caught in the controversy over kneeling shows what kind of people they really are. Jenkins devotes time during the off-season to visiting prisons, speaking with lawmakers about racial justice, and working to improve police-community engagement. Watson has advocated on behalf of Louisiana House Bill 265, which would restore the voting rights to people recently reintegrated into society after serving a prison sentence. Long donated his entire 2017 salary to education initiatives in his hometown of Charlottesville, Virginia (as well as the three cities he's played in during his NFL career); in 2015, he launched a foundation to dig water wells for people in rural east Africa. Those are just a few of the many great, charitable things these players do — often to little fanfare.

They're just citizens using their fame, their money, and their platform to fix some of society's problems. For all the talk over people kneeling during the anthem, we don't recognize that it's these acts of kindness and desire to improve the world that makes them exceptionally patriotic.

Nature

Pennsylvania home is the entrance to a cave that’s been closed for 70 years

You can only access the cave from the basement of the home and it’s open for business.

This Pennsylvania home is the entrance to a cave.

Have you ever seen something in a movie or online and thought, "That's totally fake," only to find out it's absolutely a real thing? That's sort of how this house in Pennsylvania comes across. It just seems too fantastical to be real, and yet somehow it actually exists.

The home sits between Greencastle and Mercersburg, Pennsylvania, and houses a pretty unique public secret. There's a cave in the basement. Not a man cave or a basement that makes you feel like you're in a cave, but an actual cave that you can't get to unless you go through the house.

Turns out the cave was discovered in the 1830s on the land of John Coffey, according to Uncovering PA, but the story of how it was found is unclear. People would climb down into the cave to explore occasionally until the land was leased about 100 years later and a small structure was built over the cave opening.

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Architectural Digest/Youtube

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“Stranger Things” actor David Harbour and British singer-songwriter Lily Allen, whose Vegas wedding in 2020 came with an Elvis impersonator, gave a tour of their delightfully quirky Brooklyn townhouse for Architectural Digest, and people were absolutely loving it.

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Finally, someone explains why we all need subtitles

It seems everyone needs subtitles nowadays in order to "hear" the television. This is something that has become more common over the past decade and it's caused people to question if their hearing is going bad or if perhaps actors have gotten lazy with enunciation.

So if you've been wondering if it's just you who needs subtitles in order to watch the latest marathon-worthy show, worry no more. Vox video producer Edward Vega interviewed dialogue editor Austin Olivia Kendrick to get to the bottom of why we can't seem to make out what the actors are saying anymore. It turns out it's technology's fault, and to get to how we got here, Vega and Kendrick took us back in time.

They first explained that way back when movies were first moving from silent film to spoken dialogue, actors had to enunciate and project loudly while speaking directly into a large microphone. If they spoke and moved like actors do today, it would sound almost as if someone were giving a drive-by soliloquy while circling the block. You'd only hear every other sentence or two.

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Health

Oregon utilizes teen volunteers to run their YouthLine teen crisis hotline

“Each volunteer gets more than 60 hours of training, and master’s level supervisors are constantly on standby in the room.”

Oregon utilizes teen volunteers to man YouthLine teen crisis hotline

Editor's Note: If you are having thoughts about taking your own life, or know of anyone who is in need of help, the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline is a United States-based suicide prevention network of over 200+ crisis centers that provides 24/7 service via a toll-free hotline with the number 9-8-8. It is available to anyone in suicidal crisis or emotional distress.

Mental health is a top-of-mind issue for a lot of people. Thanks to social media and people being more open about their struggles, the stigma surrounding seeking mental health treatment appears to be diminishing. But after the social and emotional interruption of teens due the pandemic, the mental health crises among adolescents seem to have jumped to record numbers.

PBS reports that Oregon is "ranked as the worst state for youth mental illness and access to care." But they're attempting to do something about it with a program that trains teenagers to answer crisis calls from other teens. They aren't alone though, as there's a master's level supervisor at the ready to jump in if the call requires a mental health professional.

The calls coming into the Oregon YouthLine can vary drastically, anywhere from relationship problems to family struggles, all the way to thoughts of self-harm and suicide. Teens manning the phones are provided with 60 hours of training and are taught to recognize when the call needs to be taken over by the adult supervisor.

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Family

Mom shares her brutal experience with 'hyperemesis gravidarum' and other moms can relate

Hyperemesis gravidarum is a severe case of morning sickness that can last up until the baby is born and might require medical attention.

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Hyperemesis gravidarum isn't as common as regular morning sickness, but it's much more severe.

Morning sickness is one of the most commonly known and most joked about pregnancy symptoms, second only to peculiar food cravings. While unpleasant, it can often be alleviated to a certain extent with plain foods, plenty of fluids, maybe some ginger—your typical nausea remedies. And usually, it clears up on its own by the 20-week mark. Usually.

But sometimes, it doesn’t. Sometimes moms experience stomach sickness and vomiting, right up until the baby is born, on a much more severe level.

Hyperemesis gravidarum (HG), isn’t as widely talked about as regular morning sickness, but those who go through it are likely to never forget it. Persistent, extreme nausea and vomiting lead to other symptoms like dehydration, fainting, low blood pressure and even jaundice, to name a few.

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“Sister Wives” star Christine Brown is back in the dating pool after ending her “spiritual union” with polygamist Kody Brown and she needs a little help to get back in the swing of things. Christine and Kody were together for more than 25 years and she shared him with three other women, Janelle, Meri and Robyn.

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