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How The Internet Enabled A Mariners Fan And DoorDash Driver To Connect And Do Something Cool

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The world can be an awful, horrible place. Lately, it feels like, in America, things are only getting more difficult. And, because my country loves its scapegoats, the internet has been routinely blamed for all the country’s, perhaps the world’s, ills. Insurrections, political radicalization, obesity, poor socialization, literally any sub-optimal thing to do with children: blame the internet.

But that’s obviously stupid. The internet is responsible for both good and bad outcomes in society, as is pretty much everything else. But the internet also is only as good or bad as those that make use of it. And sometimes, the internet enables really awesome stuff.

Take the story of Sofie Dill, Seattle Mariners fan, and Simranjeet Singh, a DoorDash driver. This past weekend, without getting into too much detail, Jesse Winker was hit by a pitch while playing the L.A. Angels and a brawl between the teams ensued. Baseball fights are plainly dumb, but some fans enjoy them, or at least root for their players in the fight. To that end, Dill, from her home in Arkansas, decided to send Winker a pizza from a local Anaheim parlor to be delivered directly to the stadium. And, for added measure, she live-tweeted her DoorDash experience for everyone to follow along.

Baseball fan or not, you should go check out the full thread. It’s a harrowing journey to see if she could in fact deliver a pizza to a professional baseball player in a visiting Major League clubhouse to express her support. The spoiler here is that the pizza did in fact get delivered, Winker reached out to her on Twitter to say thanks, and a whole bunch of people were cheering on the DoorDash driver, Singh, as he went on his dutiful journey.

As a result, Dill managed to get Singh to share his Venmo QR code and shared it out to Twitter.

And from there, the internet did its thing. Plenty of folks started sending money to Singh’s Venmo. Other’s asked they could send him money via another platform. Singh himself started sending out tweets thanking everyone, clearly overjoyed at everyone’s generosity. Then, were that not enough, two other awesome outcomes happened, just to restore your faith in humanity.

While I can’t be sure how much was donated to Singh, he certainly didn’t keep all of it for himself.

There are good people in this world. Paying it forward would have been the feel good coda to this story on its own, but then the Mariners decided to get in on the fun as well.

Dill got herself a Winker jersey from the Mariners. Singh had what he describes as a life-changing event. Mariners fans got to have a ton of fun on Twitter with all of this. St. Jude’s got a donation.

If there’s a loser in this story, I can’t find one. And all of this made possible by the evil, vile internet that too many people blame for every last thing.

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deezil
10 hours ago
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So shines a good deed in a weary world.
Louisville, Kentucky
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I’m the Last Bottle of Ketchup at Mar-a-Lago and I Live in a State of Constant Fear

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“Former Trump White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson testified on Tuesday that former President Trump was so upset that then-Attorney General William Barr dismissed claims of widespread election fraud that he threw his lunch at the wall in the West Wing dining room… ‘I first noticed there was ketchup dripping down the wall, and there was a shattered porcelain plate,’ Hutchinson testified to the House panel.” — The Hill, 6/28/22

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Now you know. The explosive January 6th hearing testimony of Cassidy Hutchinson revealed many things, like how the former president wanted to remove metal detectors to let his armed supporters attend the rally and storm the Capitol. Or how he didn’t want to do anything to stop the violence. Or that Mike Pence “deserved it.” Or that he assaulted a Secret Service agent with his tiny hands.

You also now know what I’ve always known—Donald J. Trump is a clear and present danger. Tiny hands may struggle to open a bottle, but they are more than capable of toppling a democracy.

A little about me. I’m a Heinz 57 glass ketchup bottle. That’s really it. I’m not that complicated. I mean, I have a secret blend of fifty-seven…somethings, but other than that, I live a simple life. Like any bottle of ketchup, I want to make the world a better place. I’m sweet. Not everybody likes me, but outside of maniacs in Chicago eating hot dogs, everyone recognizes I’m a force for good.

And I live in constant fear. I don’t remember much about my early days in Pittsburgh, but I’ve spent the last eighteen months at Mar-a-Lago. It’s a house of horrors, and I’m talking about more than just the interior design and the sinkholes.

I’ve seen too many friends meet what we call “The Wall.” When he gets angry, we get scared. And he gets angry a lot. Sometimes he gets mad about people saying he should be in prison for trying to overthrow the government, sometimes because he can’t drink water from a glass, or sometimes because his hands are too tiny to cut his well-well-done steak. Sometimes he’s not even eating. One time he got back from trying to walk down a ramp and was so mad he ordered food just to throw it against a wall. We lost Darryl that day. Every time his ire matches the color of his makeup, another friend meets The Wall.

I’m the last bottle left. Surrounded by plastic brothers and sisters who no longer are willing to risk their own safety to protect me. I keep telling them there’s this poem: “First they came for the mustard, and I did not speak out—because I was not mustard.” They don’t care. Most of them can’t read. I asked one if it supported the peaceful pouring of condiments, and it said, “I plead the fifth.” I’m alone here.

It’s terrifying, and I fear this evening may be my last. When Trump sits down at 4:30 p.m. to eat his well-well-done steak, I just pray his tiny hands don’t reach for me. But I know that if he is never held accountable, one day they will.

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deezil
1 day ago
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Louisville, Kentucky
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06/28/2022

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Don't let anyone tell you what you're supposed to have in your Gender Box.

 

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deezil
2 days ago
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Louisville, Kentucky
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We’ve Finally Maximized Both the Number of Guns and the Number of Babies Who Can Get Murdered by Guns

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At long last, we here at the GOP have finally achieved our goals of forcing women to give birth and allowing more people to have guns. This master plan perfectly combines our two passions: our steadfast belief that women shouldn’t have control over their own bodies, and our disturbing fetish for firearms.

There have been hundreds of mass shootings this year alone, and in 2020, more than 45,000 Americans were killed by guns. Some people look at those numbers and think, “What the hell, America? Do you even care about human life?” And we Republicans proudly answer, “No. We just pretend to be pro-life by stripping women of their reproductive rights.”

Forcing women to give birth also helps us solve the age-old question, “What is a woman?” Well, it couldn’t be more clear now: a woman is a walking womb that belongs to the government so that she can make babies who will eventually be killed by guns.

Working tirelessly to enable people to buy guns while forcing women to give birth hasn’t been easy. This took a lot of effort on our part. It seems crazy to imagine actual human beings who’ve dedicated their lives to these causes, but here we are. In fact, we’ve been laying the groundwork leading up to this moment for years, pouring dark money into elections and grooming far-right judges who are pro-gun and anti-choice. And what a brilliant return on investment we’re seeing—just imagine what might happen with all those babies and guns.

Thanks to our already horrific firearm laws, guns are now the leading cause of death for American children. You’d think we would be satisfied by the number of children killed every year—a statistic that is unique to the United States and its gun culture—but you’d be wrong.

Remember Uvalde? It’s easy to forget since there are so many mass shootings—you know who to thank for that—and one sort of blends into the next. To refresh your memory, Uvalde was the one that proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that our favorite saying, “The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun, is a good guy with a gun” was always a bald-faced lie, because armed police did nothing to stop the shooter while children and teachers were murdered. So now we have a new saying: “Force women to give birth so that more babies can be killed by guns.” It’s catchy, and this time it’s a lot more honest.

What makes this moment even more remarkable is that the women who will suffer the most by abortion bans are the most marginalized in our society—so the same people whose voting rights we’re taking away, whose social safety nets we oppose, and whose history we’re trying to ban. It’s a win-win situation, but just for us. Everyone else loses, and lots of them will also be killed.

God bless America for forcing women to have babies who can get killed by our glorious guns!

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deezil
6 days ago
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Louisville, Kentucky
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The Supreme Court Just Overturned Roe v. Wade

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The Supreme Court on Friday abolished the national right to choose abortion, overturning Roe v. Wade, the 1973 Supreme Court decision that legalized the procedure nationwide.

Without Roe’s protections to stop states from utterly banning abortion, 26 states are expected to outlaw the procedure. Millions of people will be unable to end their pregnancies in their home state and, likely, forced to have children who they may not want, cannot afford to care for, or may have devastating health problems.

“We therefore hold that the Constitution does not confer a right to abortion. Roe and Casey must be overruled, and the authority to regulate abortion must be returned to the people and their elected representatives,” Justice Samuel Alito wrote in the opinion for the court, referring to Planned Parenthood v. Casey, the 1992 Supreme Court decision that reaffirmed the right to abortion.

Alito was joined by Justices Clarence Thomas, Brett Kavanaugh, and Amy Coney Barrett. Chief Justice John Roberts filed a separate opinion that concurred in the judgement of the case. Justices Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan—who make up the liberal wing of the court—all wrote a joint dissent.

The decision is far from surprising, since a draft Supreme Court decision overturning Roe leaked in May. Overturning Roe has been the anti-abortion movement’s north star for nearly half a century. Grassroots activists in the powerful movement has spent the last decade hacking away at state-level abortion rights, leaving the procedure inaccessible to many in red states. Conservatives in Washington, D.C., meanwhile, created a pipeline for anti-abortion jurists to ascend to the highest courts in the nation. Abortion opponents hoped that, through this coordinated campaign, abortion providers would be forced to challenge anti-abortion legislation in court and create cases that could one day land in front of a Supreme Court stacked with anti-abortion justices—which is exactly what happened this term.

In 2018, Mississippi passed a law to ban abortion at 15 weeks of pregnancy, which flew in the face of Roe. The last abortion clinic left in Mississippi challenged the law, halting it from taking effect. Then, the case, Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Center, climbed through the court system until the Supreme Court heard arguments in December.

Former President Donald Trump promised to appoint anti-abortion justices to the Supreme Court; all three of his picks—Gorsuch, Kavanaugh, and Barrett—all agreed to overturn Roe.

In anticipation of the landmark ruling’s demise, 13 states have passed so-called “trigger bans,” which outlaw abortion more or less automatically as soon as Roe is overturned, according to the Guttmacher Institute, which tracks abortion rights. Seven states also retain abortion bans on the books from the days before Roe, which could be once again resurrected and used to limit abortion access.

Texas and Oklahoma recently enacted laws that, respectively, ban abortion as early as six weeks into pregnancy and at fertilization. (Although these laws defied Roe, courts have let them play out.) These laws effectively vaporized abortion access in each state, providing a snapshot of what a Roe-less United States may look like, as wouldbe patients fled to abortion-friendly states at increasing risk and cost. 

In their dissent, Breyer, Sotomayor, and Kagan made this cost plain.

This decision, they wrote, “says that from the very moment of fertilization, a woman has no rights to speak of. A state can force her to bring a pregnancy to term, even at the steepest personal and familial costs. An abortion restriction, the majority holds, is permissible whenever rational, the lowest level of scrutiny known to the law.”

“Some states have enacted laws extending to all forms of abortion procedure, including taking medication in one’s own home,” they continued. “They have passed laws without any exceptions for when the woman is the victim of rape or incest. Under those laws, a woman will have to bear her rapist’s child or a young girl her father’s—no matter if doing so will destroy her life.”

Research also indicates that forcing people to carry unwanted pregnancies to term radically alters their lives. More than a decade ago, the University of California, San Francisco started examining women who sought abortions in groundbreaking research known as the Turnaway Study. The study, which followed how the lives of women who were able to get abortions differed from those who were turned away from abortion clinics, found that women who were denied a wanted abortion and carried a pregnancy to term were four times as likely to end up living below the federal poverty level. Researchers also found that these women were more likely to stay connected to abusive partners, more likely to have serious pregnancy complications and poor physical health, and less likely to have “aspirational life plans” for the coming year.

Among women who were able to get an abortion, 95 percent told researchers five years later that it had been the right decision for them. 

Despite the ruling on Roe on Friday, abortion rights remain broadly popular. People’s opinions on exactly how and when abortion should be allowed can sometimes be contradictory, likely thanks in part to a general lack of literacy around abortion science, law, and politics. But people in the United States tend to want abortion to be legal in at least some circumstances: In a poll conducted by Gallup after the May leak, 55 percent of Americans identified as “pro-choice”—the highest percentage in decades. Just 39 percent of Americans said they were “pro-life,” the lowest level since the mid-1990s. In fact, since 1989, Gallup has consistently found that more than half of Americans want to preserve Roe. 

When it comes to the voting booth, however, people who support abortion rights rarely see them as a priority. And Democrats in Congress have repeatedly failed to codify national abortion rights, including as recently as May. Even in press releases, the Biden administration rarely uses the word “abortion.” 

But a poll released earlier this month by Gallup found that, in this year’s midterms, abortion rights may become a more important issue. Among registered voters, 27 percent say that they will only vote for a candidate who shares their view on abortion—the highest percentage ever recorded by the prestigious polling group. Democrats looking to hold onto control of Congress may be particularly interested in the fact that 38 percent of liberals told Gallup they would only vote for a candidate with their views on abortion, compared to just 24 percent of conservatives who say the same.

In their dissent, the liberal justices warned that what happened to Roe could easily happen to other hard-won rights, including the right to contraception and the rights to same-sex marriage and intimacy.

“The right Roe and Casey recognized does not stand alone. To the contrary, the Court has linked it for decades to other settled freedoms involving bodily integrity, familial relationships, and procreation,” they wrote. “They are all part of the same constitutional fabric, protecting autonomous decision making over the most personal of life decisions.”



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deezil
6 days ago
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A good friend sent me this text on learning of the decision: "We are at the threshold of hell." I can't agree more.
Louisville, Kentucky
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Taking pride in our businesses

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A couple of years ago, my partner and I moved to Kentucky, not knowing anyone in the state. Before moving, I extensively researched local websites and online magazines, trying to understand the neighborhoods and get a sense of the community. Somewhere along the way I found Lussi Brown Coffee Bar, a local business run by by a queer woman. Not knowing whether I’d get a response, I eagerly reached out through email, asking questions to get a sense of the community. To my delight, the owner, Sarah Brown (she/they), quickly responded and provided an overview of the rich history of the LGBTQ+ community in Lexington. And of course, she shared recommendations of some of their favorite LGBTQ+ owned businesses in the state too!

As we moved into town, Sarah and their girlfriend welcomed us with open arms, very much making the community immediately feel like home. And our physical home brought that same love, too. Unintentionally, we rented an apartment on a short street filled with LGBTQ+ folks from their 20s through their 70s — in fact, our neighbors called it Kentucky’s “Barbary Lane,” a nod to the tight knit, beloved street of LGBTQ+ folks in Armistead Maupin’s novel “Tales of the City.”

A person in a black shirt and shorts sits at a wooden table outside a coffee shop with a rainbow Pride flag hanging in the window

Owner Sarah Brown (she/they) outside of their coffee shop, Lussi Brown

With that same spirit, we want to make it easier for others to find LGBTQ+ owned businesses in their own community. Starting today, merchants in the U.S. with a verified Business Profile on Google can add an LGBTQ+ owned attribute to their profile, making it easier for customers to find and support them through Search and Maps. This new offering joins the Black-owned, Latino-owned, veteran-owned and women-owned business attributes we already offer, and is yet another way people can support diverse businesses.

An attendee of an event co-hosted by NGLCC and Google, sitting in a yellow chair looking forward

As we celebrate Pride, it’s important to remember visibility and representation are critical, all year round. A flag in the window of a small business has the power to bring queer folks together, to celebrate our joy, honor our history, and fight for our diverse community. It’s our hope that this attribute will allow business owners to celebrate their identity and community with the world.

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deezil
8 days ago
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Why anyone moves here willingly I will never understand (as I also plan my exit), but they did find a good community to be tucked in with. Despite Louisville being more blue on the blue/red political spectrum, Lexington has always seemed more truly progressive.
Louisville, Kentucky
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