+
upworthy
Culture

When a critic called Arnold a 'snowflake' he responded with an epic, yet uplifting mic drop

When a critic called Arnold a 'snowflake' he responded with an epic, yet uplifting mic drop

Arnold Schwarzenegger is a badass in the movies, but he's increasingly building a reputation as a heroic "action star" in real life. Only, instead of dropping ungodly amounts of fake bullets into his enemies, Schwarzenegger has been dropping rhetorical bombs against his political opponents while building intellectual and emotional bridges to those who disagree with him but still have open hearts and minds.

The most recent example found Arnold responding to a comment someone made on Facebook. On the surface, that may sound like just about the least unique or original jumping off point for a story.





But so far as Arnold's "critic" goes, I challenge you to find a better example of someone lashing out behind the safety of a keyboard. The anonymous commenter apparently doesn't like Schwarzenegger chiming in on world events like the coronavirus or the president of Donald Trump, telling the former California governor: "Stick to lifting and making movies … Snowflake is a title you do not want."

Now, there are all kinds of ways an 8-time Mr. Universe could respond to being called a "snowflake." Simply put, Arnold's response is brilliant, taking an attempt to go negative and reminding everyone of the power of positive, constructive political dialogue:

"I never mind picking up new titles. Mr. Universe, Mr. Olympia, Terminator, Governor… If you want to call me Snowflake, that's fine - it would have been a fantastic Mr. Freeze line. But let me give you some advice. If you're going to call someone a snowflake because they believe in a different policy than you, you might want to look in the mirror. When you see an idea you disagree with, you can get angry, or you can learn. I'd recommend you research and learn and grow. You can still disagree - that's the best part about being American! But at least you can disagree with evidence and analysis. We can all be better if we don't simply react. Pause, reflect, learn, and then decide if you still want to call someone a Snowflake. Good luck with everything."


Oftentimes, the most powerful statements are simple, emotionally evocative and built around an airtight argument Honestly, it doesn't matter what your politics, religion, values or agenda is, Arnold's thinking applies to them all. When we believe in our ideas and have truly examined them, including our own motivations for latching on to them, we should be willing to engage in dialogue with those who have different points of view After all, our beliefs are not contingent on their support. And each party might just learn something along the way by talking it out ... and listening.

Of course, this isn't Arnold's first rodeo in the "doing good" space of social media.

He has been trying to make a difference on social media like talking about the importance of wearing a mask since March when the coronavirus lockdown went into effect across most parts of the country.

He also responded to a fan who contacted him about being depressed, and had some wise words about why mental health trumps any flexing from time at the gym.

What Arnold is proving is that it is vital to think before we speak. Try to be informed about your opinions. When someone disagrees, try to see if they might have a point. Don't try and be right. Try and get it right. That requires having an open mind. Whether you have believed something for five minutes or 40 years, it is important to be open to all ideas. This is how we grow.

He is also showing how to bring an errant and cavalier comment back down to earth rather than getting swept up in some frivolous emotional exchange. Arnold was the bigger person (I am assuming in more ways than one). And while he might not have changed the mind of the person he was responding to, if you read the comments, his words made an impact on others.

Walking the walk is contagious. It is much like that moment when you are behind a disadvantaged person in the checkout line at the grocery store, and they either forgot their wallet or can't afford what they're trying to buy but then someone steps up and offers to pay for them. You feel a little ashamed that you didn't think of doing it first. The good news is that the next time that happens, you could be the one who steps forward and makes everyone in the line wish they had thought of it.

Another key lesson here is patience. Arnold didn't take the bait. He didn't give Mr. Keyboard Tough Guy the response he was hoping for, unless typing an insult to Arnold Schwarzenegger just made him feel empowered. And that would be sad, but I digress. Arnold is showing us the way we need to be communicating. It's not rocket science but the basic tenets of civil discourse seem pretty rare these days, especially on social media.

The Internet is the ultimate marketplace of ideas. Instead of cancelling those we disagree with, maybe the best way forward is through open dialogue and transparency. The best ideas will win, the worst ideas will lose and everything in between can be discussed back and forth to find the best ideas from both sides. If that's the role of Arnold's third act in the public eye, we can't wait for him to "be back" next time.

Kevin Bacon's farm songs have become a social media favorite.

When Beyoncé dropped two songs from her upcoming album of country tunes, Renaissance: Act II, she may not have expected to make history, but that's exactly what happened. Her first single from the album, "Texas Hold 'Em," shot to the No.1 spot on the Billboard country music charts, making her the first Black female artist to hit that top spot. The catchy tune also topped the Billboard Hot 100 the last week in February 2024, a week after it debuted at No. 2.

Presumbaly, Queen Bey didn't expect her song to become an Irish stepdance hit, though that's also exactly what happened. And surely she didn't expect it to be sung by Kevin Bacon to a bunch of farm animals, yet that also has happened.

Perhaps we should all have expected that, though. There's a precedent here, after all.

Keep ReadingShow less
Courtesy of Woodell Productions

This speech had all the things, and the Maid of Honor wasn't even there

May we all have a best friend like Ally Lothman.

Lothman had just given birth to her first child (according to Today.com) and was unable to make it to the wedding of her lifelong best friend Michelle Levenson. But Lothman’s Maid of Honor duties were still gloriously fulfilled.

A now-viral video, posted to TikTok by wedding photography and videography company Woodell Productions, shows that even though Lothman couldn’t celebrate in person, her FaceTimed wedding toast managed to bring everyone at the reception—along with everyone who watched online—to tears.
Keep ReadingShow less
"Freddie Mercury" by kentarotakizawa is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

Fans are thrilled to hear Freddie Mercury's iconic voice once again.

Freddie Mercury had a voice and a stage presence unlike any other in rock music history. His unique talents helped propel the band Queen to the top of music charts and created a loyal fan base around the world.

Sadly, the world lost that voice when Mercury died of AIDS at age 45. For decades, most of us have assumed we'd heard all the music we were going to hear from him.

However, according to Yahoo! Entertainment, remaining Queen members Roger Taylor and Brian May announced this summer that they had found a never-released song they'd recorded with Mercury in 1988 as they were working on the album "The Miracle."

Keep ReadingShow less
Pop Culture

People think everyone should experience these things 'at least once in their lifetime'

Things like seeing an eclipse and having a true best friend make life worth living.

Representative Images from Canva

Here are some things everyone should experience once in their lifetime

If there’s one thing human beings all have in common, it’s our shared impermanence. No matter our race, gender, social class, wealth status, health regimen, moral code, political leaning, or any other divisive element, we all get one life. One life to hopefully fill with as many memorable, soul nourishing, expansive experiences as possible.

But let’s face it, there are more experiences available that there are days and hours in which to do them. Therefore, we have to use discernment. So, which experiences are truly must-haves in our all-too-limited time on this planet?

The answers to this question are undoubtedly personal, but perhaps some things, just like the inevitable exit of mortal coil, are universal.

According to a recent discussion on Ask Reddit, here are things one must absolutely “experience at least once in their lifetime”:
Keep ReadingShow less
Family

Helicopter's thermal imaging helps save a young autistic girl lost in a Florida swamp

“I just love how the deputy greeted her. What a beautiful ending. You guys are the best!”

A deputy locates a missing girl in a Florida swamp.

A 5-year-old with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) wandered off into a swamp near Tampa, Florida, around 5:00 pm on Monday, February 26. The good news is that the girl was saved in about an hour thanks to the work of some brave sheriff’s officers and their incredible thermal technology.

The girl wandered from her home and was quickly reported missing by her family to the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Department. The sheriff quickly dispatched its aviation unit that used thermal imaging technology to scan the nearby swamplands to try to find the young girl before nightfall.

Thermal imaging technology captures images based on the heat emitted by objects, allowing us to see temperature differences even in the dark, making it super handy for night vision and heat detection. The thermal technology helped the officers quickly identify the girl from high above the trees.

Keep ReadingShow less
Family

10 things kids get in trouble for that adults get away with all the time

Why do we expect children to have more self-control than grown-ups?

Photo by Keren Fedida on Unsplash

Kids know when we're being hypocritical.

Raising kids is tough and no parent does it perfectly. Each child is different, each has their own personalities, strengths and challenges, and each of them requires something different from their parents in order to flourish.

But there's one thing that parents have long said, with their actions if not with their words, that justifiably drives kids bonkers: "Do as I say, not as I do."

To be fair, both moral and actual law dictate that there are things that adults can do that kids can't. Children can't drive or consume alcohol, for example, so it's not hypocritical for adults to do those things while telling kids they cannot. There are other things—movies, TV shows, books, etc.—that parents have to decide whether their kids are ready for or not based on their age and developmental stage, and that's also to be expected.

But there are some gaps between what adults do and what they expect kids to do that aren't so easy to reconcile.

Keep ReadingShow less