4 reasons Martin Luther King, Jr. fought for universal basic income

In his final years, Martin Luther King, Jr. become increasingly focused on the problem of poverty in America.

(Photo by J. Wilds/Keystone/Getty Images)
  • Despite being widely known for his leadership role in the American civil rights movement, Martin Luther King, Jr. also played a central role in organizing the Poor People's Campaign of 1968.
  • The campaign was one of the first to demand a guaranteed income for all poor families in America.
  • Today, the idea of a universal basic income is increasingly popular, and King's arguments in support of the policy still make a good case some 50 years later.
Keep reading Show less

Why I wear my life on my skin

For Damien Echols, tattoos are part of his existential armor.

  • In prison Damien Echols was known by his number SK931, not his name, and had his hair sheared off. Stripped of his identity, the only thing he had left was his skin.
  • This is why he began tattooing things that are meaningful to him — to carry a "suit of armor" made up the images of the people and objects that have significance to him, from his friends to talismans.
  • Echols believes that all places are imbued with divinity: "If you interact with New York City as if there's an intelligence behind... then it will behave towards you the same way."
Keep reading Show less

The unexpected first jobs of famous scientists

Everyone comes from somewhere.

  • First jobs can have often contradictory expectations and feel like an odd fit for your talents.
  • If you feel that way, you're not alone: Isaac Newton once worked as a farmer.
  • One tip for your first job: be an observer of people and your environment.
Keep reading Show less

Why 'upgrading' humanity is a transhumanist myth

Upload your mind? Here's a reality check on the Singularity.

  • Though computer engineers claim to know what human consciousness is, many neuroscientists say that we're nowhere close to understanding what it is, or its source.
  • Scientists are currently trying to upload human minds to silicon chips, or re-create consciousness with algorithms, but this may be hubristic because we still know so little about what it means to be human.
  • Is transhumanism a journey forward or an escape from reality?
Keep reading Show less

5 types of climate change deniers, and how to change their minds

Talking about climate change doesn't have to be an argument over Thanksgiving dinner. Some people, though maybe not all, can be persuaded.

Matt Artz via Unsplash
  • Climate change is easily one of humanity's greatest threats, and a mountain of data and evidence support this assertion.
  • Despite the evidence, only 71% of Americans believe that climate change is real and primarily driven by human activities.
  • People can and do change their minds about climate change. Trying to convince people to change their minds is often more about picking the right target than it is providing the right arguments.
Keep reading Show less