Wild Animal Performances: Unsafe For Us, Unhappy For Them

Two documentarians want to do something about it.

Culture & Religion

The circus seems like a fading relic from a simpler time, but if you're like me, and grew up in a rural area, you understand why it's still around. Traveling circuses are willing to go places that typically don't end up with much in the way of live entertainment, performing shows at country fairgrounds and small high-school gymnasiums. I first went to the circus when I was six years old, and the headliner (who knew circuses could have a headliner?) was some BMX rider. There were also trapeze artists, clowns, and probably some dogs. I don't really remember, because it was a long time ago, and I was probably more interested in my box of popcorn than anything else.

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Culture & Religion

Cable TV is dangerously close to obsolescence, so there are always plenty of ideas floating around about how to keep it relevant. A popular one is the a la carte cable package, and even though we're not really sure if any cable providers actually want to offer such an option, its populist, customizable potential means we'll have fun speculating about it anyway. Instead of paying for 200 channels, most of which we can't even name, why can't we just get 15 or 20 of our favorites at a discounted price?

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Concepts of Sportsmanship Vary Across Cultures

How do you "play the game the right way"? Depends who you ask.

Culture & Religion

I realize not all of you have a relationship with sports that's as all-encompassing and unhealthy as mine, so let me get you up to speed: Much is made of athletes' displays of sportsmanship (or lack thereof), whether they're competing in the World Series, or picking grass in the outfield as members of The Yellow Team. Obviously, any attempts to cheat or injure an opponent are out of bounds, but some purists take it even further. Did you and your teammates exchange a few too many high-fives when you rounded the bases after that home run? You'd better watch out, because some gray-haired, cigar-chomping sportswriter (probably complete with fedora) will surely take you to task for disrespecting the game. "These guys and their egos are out of control! Back in my day, we used old milk cartons as gloves, and liked it! Think of the children!" It's impossible for any devoted sports fan to avoid these "hot takes."

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What Rachel Dolezal Could've Learned From Caitlyn Jenner

Honesty truly is the best policy.

Culture & Religion

I can't remember the last time a member of academia got as much attention as former professor and NAACP leader Rachel Dolezal. It's a shame it couldn't have gone to someone more worthy of the limelight. Dolezal, who was born to white parents of German and Czech ancestry, falsely tried to pass off an African-American man who accompanied her in a recent photo as her father. She also planted fake hate mail in her post-office box; an investigation revealed that the mail was never processed by the USPS and was put into Dolezal's mailbox by someone with a key. Given the opportunity to come clean in an interview with Matt Lauer, the activist refused to admit to any wrongdoing, or even acknowledge any regrets. 

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