Hairdresser spends weekends giving remarkable, ego-boosting transformations to NYC homeless

August 21, 2014 | 8 comments

On a trip to his native Philippines, New York hairdresser Mark Bustos offered haircuts to street kids and discovered a very fulfilling way to give back using his skills. “The feeling was so rewarding,” he says, “I decided to bring the positive energy back to New York City.”

And that’s exactly what he’s done. On most Sundays, he puts together a minimal, portable salon and takes it out onto the streets where he offers free stylings to anyone who needs them and can’t afford to get trimmed on their own.

Haircuts for the Homeless - 06

Beyond simply providing a basic grooming necessity, Bustos’s haircuts improve life on a deeper level. He explains…

I do believe people with a proper, professional haircut receive more respect than those who do not have a proper haircut. Having a proper haircut also gives the recipient much more confidence.

The transformation in appearance he provides is often wonderfully substantial…

Haircuts for the Homeless - 01

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Laugh with outrage as John Oliver rips into the Ferguson police and their stupid toys

August 18, 2014 | No comments

Whether or not you’ve been following the tragic news out of Ferguson, Missouri, John Oliver’s informative overview of the events leading up to where we are today will leave you laughing, crying, and outraged…

(Some NSFW language)

One tiny Japanese driving habit that could end road rage in America. Why don’t we do this?

August 18, 2014 | 27 comments

As you’re driving along a busy road, assuming you’re not overly aggressive, there is a lot of give and take with other vehicles. Sometimes you’re letting them in, sometimes they’re letting you in. Wouldn’t it be nice if there was a conventional way to signal, “Hey, thanks, friend!” that was a little bit more visible (and common) than a wave?

In Japan there is…

(via Digg)

Now… How do we get this trend started here in the states?

Which picture will the media use if these Black men get “gunned down”?

August 11, 2014 | 8 comments

18-year-old Michael Brown was killed by a police officer in a St. Louis suburb on Saturday, just days before he was to leave for college. The fact that Brown was unarmed has generated outrage from his community and many others nationwide.

While an investigation into why a police officer opened fire on Brown is ongoing, people have turned to social media to decry the ways in which the media has reported the story. One particularly straightforward yet fascinating trend has been the “If they gunned me down” hashtag on Twitter.

To participate, young black men (and a few women, too) are sharing two pictures of themselves and rhetorically asking (with a strong dose of sarcasm) which photo we predict the media would use to tell their story if the police killed them. The point being, of course, that the media almost universally gravitates to photos that make a young, Black victim appear to be a thug, completely skipping other images that prove he was, in fact, as well-rounded and complete a human being as anybody else.

Let’s start with a couple pictures that Mike Brown himself might have posted if he’d had the chance to participate rather than motivate this sad but powerful protest. On the left is the photo that almost everyone is using to report his story, and on the right is another, obviously better photo that is just as available as the first, but that few news outlets have been using.

If the gunned me down - Mike Brown

For the rest, you can click each pic for the source and read more at The Root.

If They Gunned Me Down - 08If They Gunned Me Down - 03

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3 reasons the Ice Bucket Challenge is STILL awesome (even if you’re tired of it)

August 11, 2014 | 1 comment

Participating in the Ice Bucket Challenge is simple. You dump a bucket of ice water over your head and then upload footage of your antics along with a list of friends who you now challenge to either do the same or to make a donation to an ALS charity.

If you’ve been online at all in the last few days, you have almost certainly seen it. Everyone from your next door neighbor to Martha Stewart has participated.

Ice Bucket Challenge - 01

It started in the Boston area with former athlete Pete Frates who was diagnosed with ALS (or Lou Gehrig’s disease) two years ago and has been an outspoken advocate for those with the disease since.

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The challenge quickly spread locally around Massachusetts, and thanks to the universal nature of social media, it is now a nationwide, if not worldwide, phenomenon.

And, of course, that amount of exposure has awakened the critics and complainers. For example

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University president drastically cuts his own pay, gives a huge raise to lowest paid employees

August 7, 2014 | 3 comments

Raymond Burse

Raymond Burse spent seven years as president of Kentucky State University before launching a 17-year career at General Electric Company in 1989. Two years after entering retirement, Burse rejoined KSU as their interim president, but had a unique salary demand.

He would come on board if the university raised the pay of every school employee to a livable wage.

But how would they pay for this? Burse had a plan…

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African cocoa farmers taste chocolate for the first time. Now they understand white people…

July 29, 2014 | 16 comments

This video is almost as sweet as the food it’s about. It will make you feel spoiled by the simple luxuries we take for granted, but at the same time you’ll find it wonderfully uplifting (and funny).

Several farmers and laborers in Ivory Coast who grow and harvest the key ingredient in chocolate — cocoa beans — have never tasted the finished product. In fact, they’ve never even heard of it.

One farmer says…

To be honest I do not know what they make of my beans. I’ve heard they’re used as flavoring in cooking, but I’ve never seen it. I do not even know if it’s true.

When they get a chance to taste the fruit of their labors in this mini-documentary, they are more than a little surprised. The video as a whole is quite heartwarming, but what they have to say about white people and chocolate is downright hilarious…