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We all need to ask ourselves what we can do to prevent sexual violence
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CALCASA

Studies show that 1 in 3 females and 1 in 6 males experience sexual violence in their lifetime. Even if we aren't survivors ourselves, we all have acquaintances and loved ones affected by sexual assault or abuse.

Despite how often it occurs, sexual violence has never been something people talk about openly. Thankfully, the #MeToo movement has revealed how pervasive sexual violence is, and social media offers us a way to bring the uncomfortable subject into open, public discussions. So how do we continue these conversations in ways that propel us toward communities free from sexual violence?


By taking a stand and making #BoldMoves.

The California Coalition Against Sexual Assault just launched #BoldMoves, a public awareness campaign that provides tips and small actions we can use to prevent sexual assault by changing the way we think and act. These actions are "bold moves" because they ask us to do something we're not used to doing: act in small ways that challenge the conditions that allow sexual violence to occur.

What are some of these #BoldMoves? Here are a few places to start:

Be an "active bystander."

When you see someone being harassed, it can be hard to know how to respond in the moment. But you are the expert of your social and professional spaces, so you can imagine what an effective intervention looks like. Think ahead. Anticipate that you may have to step in sometimes, and prepare for it. Give yourself permission to interrupt people when they make others feel diminished. Practice strategies to diffuse uncomfortable situations, perhaps using humor or empathy. Rehearse the language and tone you might use to intervene. Be specific about behaviors you're witnessing and why they are problematic.

Be vocal on social.

There's a lot of problematic behavior online—don't contribute to it. Your social media is a reflection and extension of your values, almost like your personal "brand." How would people characterize your social media brand? Do people see you as a positive changemaker? Give yourself permission to use your platforms to advocate for change. The #BoldMoves website offers tips to engage online commenters in ways they'll actually hear and be receptive to, as well as ways to generate productive online conversations about ending sexual violence.

Be political.

The 1960s rallying cry "the personal is political" still holds true today. Make sure your political leaders know that ending sexual violence is important to you. Not enough money is being invested in rape prevention work at the government level, so ask those running for office where sexual assault is on their agenda. Ensuring that our laws and justice system meet the needs of various communities affected by sexual violence goes a long way toward ending sexual violence. Make your voice heard at the ballot box. Join rallies or help with political campaigns—your actions do make a difference.

Be a stereotype breaker.

Small, daily actions may not seem like they are directly related to ending sexual violence, but they are. Just because something seems like the norm, doesn't mean we should accept it as normal. Go out of your way to break gender and sexual stereotypes. For example, we live in a society where males tend to dominate in all social sectors. If you're a guy, become more aware of the expectation that men are supposed to "take control" of "important" tasks. Challenge that idea. Take on more "domestic" duties at home. Offer to send around the birthday card for a coworker. Volunteer to take notes for a group at school. Ask yourself, "Do I jump into the conversation in meetings without noticing whether others have had a chance to contribute and be valued?" Create space for everyone to be heard in meetings and spend more time listening. These small steps demonstrate ways to model shared power and responsibilities, and do not reassert the value of one gender over others.

Challenge yourself to make some other specific #BoldMoves as well:

  • Increase your knowledge. Thinking and reading more about this issue will help reshape how you think and act.
  • Interrogate yourself. We all have our own point of view, some of which is informed by our culture and some by aspects we may not even realize. For example, we carry a "gender lens" with us that shapes what we believe about gender-based violence. Ask yourself, "Where did I get these expectations about the way men, women or nonbinary folks should look or behave?"
  • Intervene when you hear a sexist comment, every time. Yes, be bold.
  • Start constructive conversations about sexist language and behavior with your friends.
  • Get involved in sexual violence prevention organizations in your area.
  • Spread the word on social. Share your ideas for #BoldMoves people can make and tag us. Join the conversation on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Share the #BoldMoves campaign video. Use your social media as a tool to catapult social change forward.

It's up to all of us—not just survivors—to create a safer, more supportive environment for everyone. Challenge yourself to make small changes and start making #BoldMoves today.

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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Hold on, Frankie! Mama's coming!

How do you explain motherhood in a nutshell? Thanks to Cait Oakley, who stopped a preying bald eagle from capturing her pet goose as she breastfed her daughter, we have it summed up in one gloriously hilarious TikTok.

The now viral video shows the family’s pet goose, Frankie, frantically squawking as it gets dragged off the porch by a bald eagle—likely another mom taking care of her own kiddos.

Wearing nothing but her husband’s boxers while holding on to her newborn, Willow, Oakley dashes out of the house and successfully comes to Frankie's rescue while yelling “hey, hey hey!”

The video’s caption revealed that the Oakleys had already lost three chickens due to hungry birds of prey, so nothing was going to stop “Mama bear” from protecting “sweet Frankie.” Not even a breastfeeding session.

Oakley told TODAY Parents, “It was just a split second reaction ...There was nowhere to put Willow down at that point.” Sometimes being a mom means feeding your child and saving your pet all at the same time.

As for how she feels about running around topless in her underwear on camera, Oakley declared, “I could have been naked and I’m like, ‘whatever, I’m feeding my baby.’”

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